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HORRIFIC: Brutal dogfighting rings exposed

HORRIFIC: Brutal dogfighting rings exposed

These shocking images, captured in northern China, show crowds of bloodthirsty men basking in the torture of animals as they bet on bloodsport.

Dogfighting, or ‘entertainment’ as they describe it in the rural village of Sanjiao in northern China's Shanxi province, is enjoyed by hundreds as over 100 festivals take place yearly. 

This barbaric display, which lasted several days, was hosted as part of the Spring Festival’s finale.

The competition was open anyone with a dog and some contenders showed up with stray or stolen animals to fight to the death.

But this sick practise isn't just the preserve of Asia as many Irish dog fighters have been exposed engaging in the brutal bloodsport, including a notorious mobster who posted a sickening video of a fox being savaged by dogs as they are ‘blooded’.

VIDEO: Sickening clip of Irish criminal 'blooding' fighting dogs

Almost as sad and grim as the practise was the prize of a pack of cigarettes and a mug for this years winners.

Animal rights activists in the country have called to change the nation’s laws on dog fighting, but one of the event’s organisers, 45-year-old Shi Pan, says that due to poverty and isolation villagers must make their own "entertainment."

“People in the city criticise our dogfights but they have all sorts of money to pay for entertainments which we don't have access to. We have to organise things to entertain ourselves.”

China does not have animal cruelty laws and a person who harms a dog cant be prosecuted unless the animal belongs to someone.

“Events like these are exactly why we need a functioning animal cruelty law in China, because people do that they want and get away with it unless they know the law can stop them,” said animal rights activist Shi Pan.