Animal cruelty hard to spot, harder to fight

Discussion in 'Pet related News stories' started by Pippin, Sep 3, 2009.

  1. Pippin

    Pippin Member

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    Despite America's love for animals and the more than $46 billion a year spent on pets, an alarming level of animal cruelty exists across our country.


    Unfortunately, animal cruelty has a very broad definition and is open to wide interpretation. There is no governmental infrastructure to measure it or federal laws to prevent it. State definitions of animal cruelty vary, leading to a patchwork of state laws. While high-profile acts of cruelty command much attention, cruelty to animals is more widespread than most people realize or can even adequately be measured. Each year, while many people witness and report acts of cruelty, thousands of cases go unreported. And the victims — the animals — suffer alone without a voice to speak out against the perpetrators.


    There has been much debate about whether we have ethical obligations that transcend our species. It is time America stops making animal cruelty a subjective discussion and focuses on the fact that animals count and animal cruelty is wrong.


    Would you know what animal cruelty is if you witnessed it? Animal cruelty takes many different forms — but communities and individuals have the power to help put a stop to it.



    If they know what they're looking for.


    Animal cruelty could be divided into two categories: intentional cruelty and unintentional cruelty or neglect. Intentional cruelty means an individual has purposely inflicted physical harm or injury on an animal. But neglect is much broader: It could mean an animal has been denied the basic necessities of care, such as food, water, shelter or veterinary care; it could also mean that the pet parent is unaware he or she is doing anything wrong and simply needs to be educated on how to properly take care of the animal.



    And at its most basic level, it simply could be the state of being homeless — which is the highest risk factor for any animal in this country.


    There has been a tremendous increase in the awareness and reporting of animal cruelty, but it is still a major problem.


    Without phone calls from concerned citizens, officials wouldn't know about most instances of animal abuse. It all comes from the public — that's why it's so important to keep your eyes and ears open. Get to know and look out for the animals in your neighborhood. By being aware, you're more likely to notice, for example, that the dog next door that was once hefty has lost weight rapidly — a possible indicator of animal abuse.


    It is also important to know the signs of animal cruelty and how to report it. Every state and, at a more local level, every town is different when it comes to who investigates animal cruelty. In some areas, you may have to rely on the police department; in others, you may have to contact local animal control or another municipal agency. The key is to determine which local agencies deal with animal cruelty and how best to engage them.


    Finally, before you finish reading this, ask yourself: "What can I do about animal cruelty?" In order to combat this critical problem, it will take the participation of whole communities and local leaders across the country. Everyone from policymakers to small business owners to corporations to the smallest shelter in the most remote town can contribute. We encourage everyone to get involved. While the crime of animal cruelty may be silent, our collective voices can certainly make a difference.

    By Laura Maloney, senior vice president of anti-cruelty initiatives for the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals .


    Source
     
  2. Pippin

    Pippin Member

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    9 SIGNS OF NEGLECT AND/OR CRUELTY

    [​IMG]• Tick/infestation Such a condition,if left untreated by a veterinarian, can lead to an animal's death.
    • Wounds on the animal's body.
    • Inadequate grooming, such as matted hair, which is painful and leads to serious injuries.
    • Extremely thin or starving animals.
    • A collar so tight that it eats into an animal's neck.
    • An owner striking or otherwise physically abusing an animal.
    • Pets repeatedly left alone without food and water, often chained up in a yard.
    • Pets that have been hit by cars, or are showing any of the signs listed above, and have not been taken to a veterinarian.
    • Pets kept in small cages or outside without shelter in extreme weather conditions.
     
  3. Griffin

    Griffin Moderator

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    I really can't stand any type of animal cruelty it just sickens me. I'm glad there are actually people out there that will put a stop to this and ring the police or RSPCA.
     

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