Saturday, July 3, 2004
Animal abuse sign of big emotional problems
By CARLA BROOKE
Recently, the Sheriffs Office picked up an injured young blond male Labrador retriever mix in Daytona North and took him to the Flagler County Humane Society. Evidently this friendly little fellows collar had grown into his skin, causing a massive wound. A veterinarian cleaned the wound, sutured it, applied ointment and gave the dog antibiotics. Fortunately, he is doing well and is on the path to recovery.
Polly Robertson, one of the animal service personnel at the shelter, reports that Beau, as the staff named him, is feeling well enough now to take on the responsibility of a surrogate father to two new puppies brought into the shelter.
A $500 reward is waiting for the first person offering information leading to the conviction of the person or persons responsible for the cruelty to Beau.
“Responsible pet ownership” – many pet owners dont give it much thought. Animal care is a huge responsibility and one that should not be taken lightly. A pet is part of the family, much like a child.
Responsible pet ownership involves looking after the pets physical needs.
Take the pets to the vet when they are ill or injured and for their annual exams and vaccinations, just as you would your child. Also provide adequate food, shelter and water. But the animals requirements do not stop there.
Again, just like children, pets require our time, attention and, most of all, our love.
Animal abuse is a heinous crime. Studies have found a clear link between animal cruelty by youths and subsequent violence against humans when they reach adulthood.
These studies have also shown that men who abuse their domestic partners often target the familys companion animals as well.
An abused dog or cat could also mean there is a bruised child, spouse or elder in the same home. In many cases, the person who is abusing either the human or the animal was abused in their own childhood.
It has been reported that young people are committing more and more shocking acts of violence in our society. It is very dangerous when a child kills or tortures an animal and gets away with it.
Humans arent born with a cruel gene; it is a consequence of environment and society. It has been suggested that special attention be paid to children who are cruel to animals.
Many notorious criminals have histories of animal torture and killing in their childhood. Adolescent males who experienced violence in their homes predominantly perpetrated these violent acts against animals. Early intervention can help to break this cycle of violence.
Dismissing childhood cruelty with “kids will be kids” is condoning the act.
Childhood bullies and those who are cruel to animals need help. Community education is a must. It is rare that people who abuse animals stop there. If you see an animal being neglected or abused, please report it.
Violent behavior should not be tolerated. If someone is prosecuted for animal abuse, it sends a signal to other potential abusers in the community that these cases are taken seriously.
In the past week, 16 adoptions took place at the Humane Society, 5 animals were returned to their owners, and 72 had to be euthanized.
There are currently 92 cats, 84 dogs, 6 hamsters, 1 rabbit and 2 guinea pigs residing at the Flagler County Animal Shelter.
The shelter is open to visitors from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday and 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday and most Sundays. The shelter will be closed Sunday, the Fourth of July. The shelter is at 1 Shelter Drive, Palm Coast. Log onto the Humane Society Web site at www.flaglerhumane.org for information or contact the Shelter at (386) 445-1814.