Animal Cruelty

Animal Cruelty Linked to Other Forms of Violence

2 Comments 30 June 2010

Animal Cruelty Linked to Other Forms of Violence

The New York Times Magazine recently published “The Animal-Cruelty Syndrome,” an in-depth look at the correlation between animal abuse and other criminal activity. Animal abuse has long been linked to domestic violence, firearms possession, and drug trafficking, among other crimes, on an anecdotal basis. Now, however, scientific research proves the link, and law enforcement officials are taking animal-abuse cases very seriously.

One of the most direct links is between animal abuse and domestic violence. According to

71% of pet-owning women entering women’s shelters reported that their batterer had injured, maimed, killed or threatened family pets for revenge or to psychologically control victims; 32% reported their children had hurt or killed animals.

While the statistics are disheartening, law enforcement officials are starting to work together to tackle both animal abuse and domestic violence. Veterinarians are being trained to report suspected abuse to the police who are being cross-trained to follow up with the families for signs of domestic abuse.

Great strides are being made in combating animal abuse and cruelty. But the most important thing that we all can do is report suspected animal abuse to stop abusers in their tracks. So what should you do if you suspect an animal is being abused?

  • First, familiarize yourself with signs to watch for in potentially abused animals.
  • Never confront a potential abuser by yourself. There are law-enforcement officials who are trained to investigate and handle those situations.
  • Contact your local humane association and/or your local police.
  • Support the creation of an animal abuse registry to track animal abusers.


- who has written 7 posts on Castor & Pollux Pet Works Blog.

Maggie Marton is a freelance writer based in Bloomington, IN. She adores writing about animal-related topics, especially welfare and advocacy issues and volunteers for animal welfare groups.

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2 Comments so far

  1. JACKIE M says:

    I strongly agree that those who have abused an animal should be punished. The laws in this country are basically a slap on the hand to the offenders and a punch in the face to the vitims. Take for instance the Animal Cops shows on Animal Planet; the rescued animals have been saved from treachery, however the people that abused the poor things only get a fine of $500 and maybe a week in jail! HOW SAD! I agree that they should track abuse offenders, they do it with child sex offenders so why not do it for the animals that don’t have a voice! I own a rescued Staffordshire Bull Terrier (Max). He was used as a bait dog and he has the battle scars to prove it. His bottom jaw was broken, his teeth were ground down so he couldn’t bite back, and he’s covered in scars from being attacked. He’s the best thing that came into my life! He has in turn saved my life by stopping 2 intruders from breaking into my home. I was alone and he alerted me to their presence with a low tone growl. I heard my door handle turn and I approached the door with Max at my side. As I went to grab the handle the door flew open and there were 2 men standing at my door with a power drill, a pillow case and brass knuckles. They heard Max barking and growling so they started running. I let Max run after them and called the police who were there in lightning quick speed to apprehend my NEIGHBORS! The officer asked me where the men were, I responded proudly,”Follow the bark!” It turns out Max followed the two men to their appartment in the building next to mine, where he stood guard outside making sure they couldn’t harm his mom. The two men were charged by the state for attempted robbery with a weapon, breaking and entering, and they had existing warrants, one of them was wanted for rape. I thank God for bringing Max into my life, without him that day what could have happend to me? Since then I have told “pitbull” opposers that they have NO BRAINS!!! I WILL NEVER OWN ANOTHER BREED EVER!

  2. DeeDee says:

    The dog in the photo appears to be another victim. What is this being’s status?

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