How To Raise a Fighting Rooster

Cockfighting is an age-old sport that involves two roosters dueling to the death inside a pit. As a sport that revolves around birds, you may be wondering about the chickens used by enthusiasts to participate in the game. Several breeds of fighting cocks are raised, trained, and handled to battle one another. 

Breeding of fighting cocks is a rather lucrative industry, especially in the Philippines as it is a country where cockfighting events are legal. Aside from being profitable, breeding cocks can be a very pleasant activity that can give you great satisfaction. However, it is a long and tedious process that requires time and dedication. If you’re interested in knowing more about fighting cocks, this article is for you.

What Breed of Chicken is Used in Cock Fighting?

Chickens can be classified into roosters and hens. A hen is an adult female that lays eggs and is not usually used in cockfight battles but rather, for breeding. On the other hand, the rooster is a male chicken that is primarily used in cock fighting. While there are many breeds of the rooster, not all of them are suitable for fighting. Also referred to as cocks, the birds used for fights can be distinguished by their highly aggressive nature. 


One of the most well-known and frequently seen roosters in cockfights is the Kelso rooster. This bird breed is the most classic one for combat. They’re known to be intelligent and are also very good at attacking above and below. Kelso chickens are also known to be very beautiful animals due to their great size. 


Another well-known line of cocks is the Sweater developed by Carol Nesmith. This type of cock has consistently won matches and hard competitions over the years. It has also been named the winningest bloodline of cocks in the Philippines and Mexico. Breeders note that the Sweater bird is a good flier and its feather color goes from yellow to golden. The Sweater’s legs are also colored yellow. 


The Hatch breed is one of the most recommended by breeders when it comes to American bloodlines. Hatch birds are known for their strength and speed of attack. Hatch hens match well with almost any other line and can be bred together with the Sweater and Kelso.


Albany chickens have a very distinct dark red or dark brown color. They are powerful in battles and are also quite active in the ring. Albany hens can also be bred together with the Kelso and Hatch. 


The Asil is noted to have a long neck, broad shoulders, a short beak, and prominent wings. This bloodline is known to be one that can be mixed with a variety of lines. There’s even a saying that the Asil is the only line that can improve many males. It gives its offspring more cut, power, and resistance.


The Radio bird is widely used in Mexico and the United States. This bird is aggressive and can be described as determined, especially in fights as they always look for the opponent and strike quickly. 

What Is The Best Fighting Rooster Bloodline?

If you’re thinking of entering the industry by breeding and raising chickens to put extra money in your pocket, or perhaps you’re an enthusiast deciding on your initial bird to expand with, the first thing you need to do is to choose a bloodline. There are numerous bloodlines to choose from, and the subject of which one is the best of the best is always up for debate. Certainly, though, there are bloodlines that are truly a class above others. 

Whether you want to raise fighting cocks for your own breeding business or for your own fighting roster, you should never settle for anything but the top fighting breeds. According to expert breeders, the top five bloodlines that you should select are the Sweater, Kelso, Hatch, Asil, and Radio.

How Much Do Fighting Roosters Cost?

The cost of fighting cocks can greatly vary due to several factors. First, it depends on whether the fighting bird is a stag or an older gamefowl. A bird is considered a stag when it is between 8 to 12 months old, while a full-grown battle cock is more than a year old. Second, the price of the game bird also depends on the reputation of the breeder and its bloodline. Furthermore, the more popular the bloodline of the bird is, the more expensive it will be.

A stag from a well-known farm could cost anywhere between PHP 5,000 to 10,000 (USD 100 to 200). On the other hand, a full-grown fighting fowl could cost from PHP 10,000 to 25,000 (USD 200 to 500).

How Do You Pick Chicken for Cockfighting?

There is no one answer to this question as it depends upon your preference on which cock to pick. There are a ton of breeding lines out there, and it may get confusing to know which one you should pick to use in a cockfight. If you’ve done all the breeding yourself, you would be the one who knows your flock best. 

Select the bird that has the best form, with thick beaks, strong shoulders, well-proportioned legs, rounded breasts, and strong wings. You should also keep in mind the speed, agility, and stamina of your gamefowl.

What To Feed Fighting Cocks?

The food of a fighting cock is special. It includes meat, eggs, nuts, raisins, corn, and seeds. There must be an emphasis on the percentage of protein in the food mixture as if you don’t offer your cocks a suitable level of protein, it will not develop properly. 

Proteins are one of the primary components of a bird’s tissues; they can be found in their blood, muscles, organs, skin, feathers, ligaments, nails, and the like. Having a complete mix of food with an adequate amount of protein allows the birds to remain in excellent shape and form.

Can You Tame Fighting Birds?

Breeding birds also means learning how to tame them so that they do not attack you. You are the boss of the birds. Firstly, it’s important to protect yourself from any kind of attack by wearing appropriate gear such as knee-high rubber boots. If a bird charges at you, do not back away and learn to establish your dominance.

Spending time in the territory of the bird also helps and the more you do it, the more your cock can recognize you. It’s also vital to pick up and hold the cock once they are less aggressive. Giving him treats can also aid in taming cocks.

How Do You Condition a Rooster to Fight?

Breeding and raising chickens to use in fighting sports means that you also need to condition them. One of the best ways to condition fighting birds is to let them hit a training dummy as many times to the limit of its endurance. This should be done 2 to 3 times each week at the beginning of the training. The catch cock dummy should be set at knee level during the initial training, and in the next stage, it should be raised at the waist level of the handler. 

A more detailed conditioning process is to prepare the bird both physically and mentally. Giving them a diet consisting of meat, corn, seeds, and nuts, and pairing those with nutritional supplements can increase the strength and stamina of the bird. You can also plan a daily routine consisting of exercises from the cord, fly pen, scratch box, and then sparring. Rest time is also encouraged.

How Do You Make a Rooster Fight Better?

No matter the breed of the cock, you can make them fight better by training them and giving them a highly specialized diet. 

There are also expert breeders who practice the skill of selective breeding. This means that at the start of every breeding season, they are allowed to have the opportunity to choose a cock and a hen to be the next generation of the bird strain. By choosing the best lines for breeding, traits can be improved and in turn, can result in the perfect gamefowl which can duel better than their predecessors.

Final Note

Breeding birds can be a lucrative business, especially when the fowls are from a top-class bloodline. Cocks are highly in-demand in neighboring countries and other places in the world where cockfighting is legal. Animal rights groups often see cock breeding and cockfights as forms of cruelty against animals, so it is important to only practice these activities in places where it is accepted. 

A lot of knowledge is required in breeding and raising fighting cocks. It can be a daunting and time-consuming task, especially if you are just starting out, but with the necessary knowledge, information, and skills, you’ll be able to become a pro in no time.