Fox penning is a blood sport in which dozens of dogs compete in a fenced-in area to chase—and sometimes rip apart—foxes and coyotes. Trapped in the wild and sold to fox pens, often in other states, the fox or coyote must run for his life inside fences where there is no hope of getting away.
Grisly from start to finish, fox penning begins when the steel jaws of a leghold trap snap shut on a coyote or fox, inflicting terrible pain. A trapper removes the animal from the trap and packs her into a cage with other injured animals.
The caged animals may be hauled hundreds of miles. With no food or water, some animals die on the trip. Once bought by pen operators, the foxes and coyotes provide amusement for participants who travel from state to state to wager on their dogs.
With dogs tearing apart the captive animals, there is a constant demand for fresh wildlife for the fox pens.
News & Events
March 21, 2013
Recommendations proposed by the Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries and its Board of Directors significantly narrow the options to regulate Virginia’s inhumane fox pens and were met with disappointment by The Humane Society of the United States.
February 12, 2013
The Humane Society of the United States issued the following statements on Virginia House of Delegates committee vote on Senate Bill 1280, authored by Sen. David Marsden, D-Burke, to crack down on inhumane fox pens.
February 5, 2013
The HSUS applauds the Virginia Senate for advancing Senate Bill 1280, authored by Sen. David Marsden, D-Burke, to crack down on inhumane fox pens.
January 31, 2013
The HSUS applauds the Senate Agriculture, Conservation and Natural Resources Committee for advancing Senate Bill 1280, authored by Sen. David Marsden, D-Burke, to crack down on inhumane fox pens.
May 14, 2013
A roadside zoo in Mississippi has lost its exhibitor license after 43 years. The U.S. Department of Agriculture revoked the license following an undercover investigation and legal complaints to state and federal officials by The Humane Society of the United States.
May 8, 2013
A California court has upheld the constitutionality of Proposition 4, a 1998 state ballot measure banning use of cruel traps and poisons for the purpose of killing wildlife.
April 8, 2013
The Humane Society of the United States, Humane Society International, National Aquarium, National Wildlife Federation and Oceana applaud the Maryland General Assembly for banning the possession, sale, trade and distribution of shark fins.
March 1, 2013
A coalition of groups is applauding a decision by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia to reject a challenge to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s 2008 decision to list polar bears as a threatened species under the Endangered Species Act.