Help prevent abuse and neglect in all forms!
Here at the Animal Welfare Society, we see evidence of animals abuse and neglect every day. From the starving dog that is seized by the town Animal Control Officer, to the matted and flea infested cat that is surrendered to us by its owner, to the malnourished dog that is left in a box by a restaurant dumpster, our shelter cares for the animals that have no place else to turn. In many instances, the perpetrators of these crimes are never found, or if they are known, are often not prosecuted. How can our society let crimes like these go unpunished?
According to the Humane Society of the United States, animal cruelty encompasses a range of behaviors that are harmful to animals, ranging from neglect to malicious killing. Unintentional neglect, such as poor nutrition, lack of proper shelter and lack of medical care can often be alleviated through education and public awareness. Intentional cruelty, however, involves knowingly depriving an animal of food, water, shelter, socialization or veterinary care, or maliciously torturing, maiming, mutilating or killing an animal. While animal cruelty is a serious concern for the fact that no living creature should be forced to undergo such suffering, there is an even bigger picture, which involves all forms of violence and the links between them.
People who intentionally abuse animals are often suffering psychological distress and have suffered some form of violence themselves and may be predisposed to committing acts of violence against animals, children, elders and other adults. Over the past 25 years, there have been many studies regarding the link between violence forms in the fields of psychology, sociology, criminology, animal welfare and domestic violence prevention. While there are many reasons why some people abuse animals and resort to violence, the fact remains that violence in any form should not be tolerated, even when there is no human victim. By recognizing the importance of animal abuse and neglect, we will be helping animals as well as the people who may become victims of the same abuser.
For those of you interested in this field, get involved! Find out more about the link by visiting the Humane Society of the U.S.s First Strike campaign at www.hsus.org or the American Humane Associations Understanding the Link campaign at www.americanhumane.org. Another way to help is to watch and not remain silent. If you see animal abuse or neglect occurring, speak up and let the proper authorities, including town Animal Control Officers, local shelters and the State Animal Welfare Program, know! Reports can usually be made anonymously. You can also educate your child on the importance of speaking up for animals. Many children will experiment with abuse and this needs to be caught early on. Your child can let you know if they see abuse occurring. Finally, ask your childs school to include education opportunities regarding the link between violence forms. The Animal Welfare Society offers classes for elementary schools, Junior and High Schools, and community groups regarding the cycle of violence.
For more information, please call us at 985-3244 and speak with either our Program Coordinator or Humane Educator. The Animal Welfare Society exists to provide care for animals in need, but also serves to educate the community regarding important animal welfare issues. No living creature should have to undergo suffering. Please help us end the cycle of violence.