July 2021

Rusky Roo’s – cockfighting – The far reaching consequences of criminal animal cruelty often do not end at confiscation. Sometimes the negative consequences are unavoidable in spite of the best efforts of seasoned animal welfare professionals, seeking positive outcomes. 

The state of Texas required disease testing of the Rusky Roo’s to ensure not only their health but the health of other flocks. Testing resulted in positive results for ILT (to learn more about ILT https://www.business.qld.gov.au/…/infectious…). This devastating disease has no viable treatment, a near 70% fatality rate and is highly communicable to birds as far away as 500 meters. It is a gruesome death.

Due to the seriousness of ILT; the high risk of these birds, the potential of infecting other flocks and their environments, and the risks to those birds within the food supply, the state ordered euthanasia for the flock. This is not a decision we have a voice in. As we are deeply saddened by this decision, we understand the difficult position TAHC is placed in due to the actions of those who engage in criminal cruelty. No one wanted this outcome. While devastated by this news, our team continued the high level of care for the birds in their last days and stayed to assure a humane hand over of custody to the state.

To be clear, let’s place blame where blame belongs. These results are the consequences of criminals. The criminal neglect and cruelty, the dangerous and inhumane practices of blood sports – placed the lives of the Rusky Roos in a no win situation.