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Our history is filled with horrific and cruel hobbies involving animal abuse as a way to relax. While most of these activities are now illegal, they are far from extinct.

Cockfighting, for example, is a blood sport that has been around for hundreds of years. It is probably one of the most brutal events for the poor birds. Yet it is still considered a mainstream activity and an integral part of the culture in many countries around the world.

If you own roosters, you are aware that one of the scariest aspects of them or your barn, in general, is their spurs. A rooster spurs to the back of the leg is incredibly painful and can lead to infections and a newfound fear of your rooster.

This article is all about cockfight spurs, we will discuss in detail what are cockfight spurs, what is the spur on chicken, are these cockfight spurs are legal, whether roosters can fight naturally without spurs, and many more. 


Cockfighting spurs are razor-sharp blades attached to the legs of the bird. The birds frequently use these spurs to kill or disable their opponent during cockfights, which take place face-to-face in a pen. Because these spurs are so dangerous, their bird frequently slashes handlers.

The spikes typically range from just over an inch for “short spurs” to nearly two and a half inches for “long spurs.” The spikes in the highest levels of 17th-century English cockfighting were made of silver. Sharp spurs have been reported to injure or even kill bird handlers.

A cockfight involves two roosters fighting in a ring until one cannot continue or dies. Roosters’ legs have natural spurs, but in cock fighting, these spurs are removed and replaced with a sharp, metal spur called a gaff. The gaff is usually attached to the cocks’ left leg.

The curved blades of the metal gaffs or spurs closely resemble ice picks. The two cocks engage in combat and use their spurs to attack one another. The cocks may suffer significant physical trauma as a result of the sharpness of the spurs. Some roosters can survive spur injuries, but most of the time, they die after a match.


Roosters, tom turkeys, and other sexually mature male birds of the Galliformes Order, such as guineafowl, partridges, and pheasants, have spurs, bony projections found on the inside of their legs.

A rooster spur is a claw-like growth on a rooster’s leg. It has a slightly arched shape and an extremely sharp point at the end. Chicken spurs are protected by a tough layer known as keratin. This is the same material used to make bird beaks and our nails.

What is the purpose of roosters’ spurs? (3 Basic Reasons)

Roosters are extremely romantic birds, and their priority is protecting their hens. Spurs are a sharp weapon that roosters use when attacking.

1. Because every living thing needs protection, one of the primary functions of a rooster’s spurs is to shield his hen from all types of predators, including dogs, cats, hawks, and crows.

2. Roosters will also use their paws to defend themselves against other roosters. Because cocks can fight over more than just bets, they can also fight over food, hens, and territory.

3. Spurs strengthen roosters, allowing them to attack humans, other roosters, and predators.

Can you take the spur off a rooster?

Yes, humans can permanently remove roosters’ spurs for their safety. It will aid in the prevention of injuries as well as the prevention of other hens during mating. But that rooster will be unable to fight.

How can I protect myself from roosters’ attacks? (4 simple steps)

If you can, roosters are great to have around. Some city ordinances prohibit the king of the coop from residing within city limits.

However, if you can have these guys around, you should think about it (spurs and all). Roosters are hens’ protectors and providers.

They’d gladly risk their lives for their ladies and will scan the sky for hawks while hens scratch and peck at the goodies on the ground.

I enjoy having roosters around, though I haven’t always had the best luck with their spurs. I’ve Although roosters have in the past chased and pushed us around. Their value is immeasurable, and I’d never keep a free-range flock without one.

There are a few bad apples in the bunch. Not every rooster is going to be safe and respectful of you. Regarding an aggressive rooster, the rule “don’t bite the hand that feeds you” does not always apply.

In those cases, consider freezer camp or selling to someone willing to butcher him.

Always keep an eye out for suspicious roosters and take the following precautions to avoid injury:

How to Stay Safe When Surrounding Rooster Spurs

1. Bring something to protect yourself from the coop.

2. Avoid serious injuries by wearing jeans around aggressive roosters.

3. Neve bends over to avoid roosters.

4. Do not turn your back on the suspicious rooster.

On the other hand, if you have a normally sweet rooster who suddenly becomes a bit anxious, he may require medication.

Happy roosters usually don’t freak out on people if they have everything they need, which includes: 

  1. Plenty of hens
  2. Food and water 
  3. A clean coop 
  4. Safety 
  5. Shelter

A cock that lacks any of these items may become a stressed-out hot mess and take it out on you. So, before you reject him as one of the bad apples, consider what you can do to change his attitude.

Cockfighting is a crime in every state as of 2021, and 42 states consider it a felony.

It is illegal in 43 states to watch cockfights, to possess or sell fighting roosters in 39 states, and to possess animal fighting paraphernalia in 29 states.

The use of spurs, both natural and man-made, is permitted in countries where cock fighting is legal. Some regions do not remove the rooster’s natural spurs. At the same time, others use metal spurs or spurs made of different materials.


Cocks naturally interact in the fight with one another in the wild to establish territory or mating rights. 

But serious injuries are uncommon because they back away and leave the area when they accept defeat.

You might think that a rooster only fights another rooster inside a ring called a cockpit, but this is not true. A rooster frequently fights with other roosters to demonstrate its dominant behavior and maintain its top status.


While birds will fight over food, territory, or mates, these fights are usually just to establish dominance within a group (the pecking order) and rarely result in serious injury.

This differs greatly from staged cockfights, where the animal’s survival instinct is exploited.

A rooster’s spurs are used for protection and to demonstrate dominance.

They use it to protect themselves and their hens from predators like dogs, cats, and anything that appears to be a threat. They will also use them to compete for hens, territory, or food.


Roosters have natural spurs and use their spurs to attack humans for the same reasons they attack other chickens. A rooster’s natural spur can be removed, and this is often done when it is raised and trained for the sport of cock fighting.

Instead of natural spurs, a rooster is fitted with a metal spur called a gaff. Cocks attack with the gaff, as well as their beak, wings, and claws.

The spurs cause significant physical trauma to the cocks. It is common to see a fight end with one bird injured and unable to continue or dead. In countries where cockfighting is legal, using a metal rooster spur is not banned.

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