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These before and after photos show what happens when you put an end to dogfighting.

Come on, folks. We can do better than this.Heads-up: If you don't want to view the graphic images of injured dogs at the moment, just avoid hitting "play" on the video and read the rest.

These before and after photos show what happens when you put an end to dogfighting.

What do these three dogs have in common?

They all used to be involved in dogfighting.


What exactly is dogfighting?

It's a "sport" where dog owners force their dogs to fight each other, usually for money. According to the ASPCA:

"Major dogfight raids have resulted in seizures of more than $500,000, and it is not unusual for $20,000-$30,000 to change hands in a single fight."

Wait until you hear about what happens to the dogs.

They sustain horrible injuries, most of which are never treated. As a result, many dogfighting dogs die. Those that don't often live in terrible conditions, chained down to the ground in a circle of dirt or a dirty doghouse.

Fortunately for many dogs, there are people out there who fight to rescue them, crack down on dogfighting rings, and round up the abusers.

Ever, Blue, and Haddukken were all saved by such people. The fact that they now have loving owners who care for them — and who they love — shows that dogs *can* overcome this type of abuse. And the best part?

You can help save them. Here's how:

  1. If you see something, say something.

    Report animal cruelty wherever you see it. Call your local police or animal control agency, as well as any of the multiple animal shelters or rescues in your neighborhood. The ASPCA also has an AWESOME list with tips on what else you should know and do when you report animal cruelty.

  2. Know your state. Know your laws.
    While dogfighting is a felony from Alabama to Wyoming, animal cruelty laws still differ from state to state. Make sure your state isn't letting animal abusers off the hook.
  3. Adopt a pit bull.
    If there's any breed that is disproportionately targeted for dogfighting, it's the pit bull. Because of this, many people think that pit bulls are inherently more violent than other breeds, and that is why they overwhelmingly fill up animal shelters. But that's not true. The truth is that the pit bulls in dogfighting are only bred to be this way. They're as warm and friendly as any other breed can be, and many of them need a home.

April 8 is National Dog Fighting Awareness Day. Spread the word today (and every day) to help make a safer world for our furry friends.

You can watch the video below to learn more — heads-up, there are graphic images.

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Courtesy of Verizon
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If someone were to say "video games" to you, what are the first words that come to mind? Whatever words you thought of (fun, exciting, etc.), we're willing to guess "healthy" or "mental health tool" didn't pop into your mind.

And yet… it turns out they are. Especially for Veterans.

How? Well, for one thing, video games — and virtual reality more generally — are also more accessible and less stigmatized to veterans than mental health treatment. In fact, some psychiatrists are using virtual reality systems for this reason to treat PTSD.

Secondly, video games allow people to socialize in new ways with people who share common interests and goals. And for Veterans, many of whom leave the military feeling isolated or lonely after they lose the daily camaraderie of their regiment, that socialization is critical to their mental health. It gives them a virtual group of friends to talk with, connect to, and relate to through shared goals and interests.

In addition, according to a 2018 study, since many video games simulate real-life situations they encountered during their service, it makes socialization easier since they can relate to and find common ground with other gamers while playing.

This can help ease symptoms of depression, anxiety, and even PTSD in Veterans, which affects 20% of the Veterans who have served since 9/11.

Watch here as Verizon dives into the stories of three Veteran gamers to learn how video games helped them build community, deal with trauma and have some fun.

Band of Gamers www.youtube.com

Video games have been especially beneficial to Veterans since the beginning of the pandemic when all of us — Veterans included — have been even more isolated than ever before.

And that's why Verizon launched a challenge last year, which saw $30,000 donated to four military charities.

And this year, they're going even bigger by launching a new World of Warships charity tournament in partnership with Wargaming and Wounded Warrior Project called "Verizon Warrior Series." During the tournament, gamers will be able to interact with the game's iconic ships in new and exciting ways, all while giving back.

Together with these nonprofits, the tournament will welcome teams all across the nation in order to raise money for military charities helping Veterans in need. There will be a $100,000 prize pool donated to these charities, as well as donation drives for injured Veterans at every match during the tournament to raise extra funds.

Verizon is also providing special discounts to Those Who Serve communities, including military and first responders, and they're offering a $75 in-game content military promo for World of Warships.

Tournament finals are scheduled for August 8, so be sure to tune in to the tournament and donate if you can in order to give back to Veterans in need.

Courtesy of Verizon

via @Todd_Spence / Twitter

Seven years ago, Bill Murray shared a powerful story about the importance of art. The revelation came during a discussion at the National Gallery in London for the release of 2014's "The Monuments Men." The film is about a troop of soldiers on a mission to recover art stolen by the Nazis.

After his first time performing on stage in Chicago, Murray was so upset with himself that he contemplated taking his own life.

"I wasn't very good, and I remember my first experience, I was so bad I just walked out — out onto the street and just started walking," he said.

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