Animal Cruelty Must Stop | Teen Ink

Animal Cruelty Must Stop MAG

February 12, 2009
By jennyxleigh BRONZE, Winchester, Virginia
jennyxleigh BRONZE, Winchester, Virginia
1 article 0 photos 12 comments

Favorite Quote:
"Don't cry because it's over, smile because it happened." - Dr. Seuss

Every day in the United States animals are beaten, neglected, or forced to struggle for survival. Left in unsanitary conditions with no food or water, they have little hope as they live out their days without the compassion they deserve. Some are found and rescued, given the chance to experience how great life and humans can be; others aren't so lucky. To grow as a nation, we must fight for these abused animals' rights and severely punish heartless owners. It is up to us to speak for these creatures who lack a voice, for who will if we don't?

One of the first steps in protecting animals and ­creating effective cruelty laws is knowing what animal cruelty actually is. There are two categories: passive cruelty and active cruelty. The first ­involves acts of omission, meaning the abuse happens as a result of neglect or lack of action. Passive cruelty might seem less serious, but that is not the case; it can lead to terrible pain and suffering, and ultimately death. Examples include starvation, dehydration, untreated parasite infestations, inadequate shelter in extreme weather conditions, and the failure to get medical care. Passive cruelty is sometimes due to the owner's ignorance, so many animal control officers will first try to educate neglectful owners on how to properly care for animals before giving them a citation or placing them under arrest.

Active cruelty, on the other hand, is more well known and disturbing. Sometimes referred to as non-accidental injury, this type of abuse involves purposefully inflicting harm on an animal in order to feel more powerful or gain control. Active cruelty against animals should be taken very seriously, since it can be a sign that a person has serious psychological issues and may commit more acts of violence – possibly against humans.

It is hard to tell just what drives people to harm innocent animals. “According to a 1997 study done by the Massachusetts Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals and Northeastern University, animal abusers are five times more likely to commit violent crimes against people and four times more likely to commit property crimes than are individuals without a history of animal abuse,” says It is vital to report people who hurt animals. Most animal abusers find some sort of fulfillment or power in torturing a victim they know can't fight back, which is why crimes like rape and child molestation are committed. While not all animal abusers become serial killers or rapists, it is important to take every case seriously.

For example, Carroll Edward Cole was a West Coast serial killer who may have murdered as many as 35 women in the 1970s and ྌs, and was executed in 1985. Based on Cole's testimony, his first violent act was strangling a puppy. The Columbine school shooting is another example of animal abuse as a precursor to human violence. Before killing 12 classmates and then turning the guns on themselves, Eric Harris and Dylan Klebod had bragged to friends about mutilating animals. If these acts had been reported to authorities and taken seriously, these two young men might have been put in a proper facility and helped, possibly avoiding the horrific massacre.

Given these examples, it's hard to imagine why all states don't take animal cruelty seriously. Alaska, Arkansas, Idaho, Mississippi, North Dakota, and South Dakota have no felony provisions for cruelty to animals. According to the Humane Society, a good felony anticruelty law should protect all animals, apply to first-time offenders, carry large fines and lengthy prison time, have no exemptions, require convicted abusers to get counseling at their own expense, and prohibit abusers from owning or living among animals. Along with these laws we need officials who will strongly enforce them. Police, psychologists, and even the FBI recognize the link between animal cruelty and violence against people. To better protect communities, all states should institute strong penalties and work to increase public awareness of these crimes.

It's not only up to the legal system to ensure that communities across the country are aware and educated about animal cruelty. There are plenty of things everyday citizens can do. The simplest action is for people to take care of their own pets and learn the facts so they can educate others on proper animal care. Another easy way to help is by donating to or volunteering at a local animal shelter. Contrary to popular belief, volunteering doesn't require a lot of time; simply going in a few hours a week helps tremendously. Finally, by writing letters you can remind your local lawmakers that animal abuse is a real problem that needs to be addressed. Taking a few minutes to support this worthy cause not only helps animals, it allows you to feel proud about standing up for something so important to society.

It is our job to be the voice for creatures who cannot speak up for themselves. As a nation we need to make it our priority to come together and ensure the safety of our beloved pets. As Margaret Mead once said, “Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has.”

The author's comments:
I wrote this paper as an assignment for my english class, and feel very strongly about the issue of animal cruelty.

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This article has 213 comments.

fox163 said...
on Apr. 4 2014 at 6:32 pm
animal abuse is just stupid y would u ever abuse a sweet little animal 

on Mar. 22 2014 at 6:56 pm
i like animalls.

logan2323 said...
on Mar. 17 2014 at 11:16 pm
this ensired me to write a paper

KYLEplayer13 said...
on Mar. 8 2014 at 8:40 pm
Animal abuse is just so wrong. Who would go out there and take like a chicken and just like kill it ruthlessly. no one here. Horrible people out there all of them need too feel the pain that the animals feel. why not skin them alive then make them into a bag.

on Feb. 10 2014 at 9:21 pm
Poor things. This wants to make me cry yet i can't because I have homework to do. ;(

on Feb. 10 2014 at 9:03 pm
I'm sorry but you got it all wrong. I have a dog and I'm not that busy to not give it some love. My dog is my light of the universe and if he dies I'd cry my heart out without a single thought. So you say who cares about animals? I do and I just showed some of it to you.

katy123 said...
on Feb. 6 2014 at 10:49 pm
You know ir's so sad to see people commenting here and saying "who cares about animals". These animals who are being abused did not ask to be abused, they don't need pain simply because they are defenceless. If people are speaking up against rape, chid molestation, then they should also speak up against animal cruelty. For all we know, these animals are one of us , we are responsible for their safety. The least we can do is speak up against it, inform others and constantly educate ourselves! 

zombiezilla said...
on Jan. 15 2014 at 1:29 pm
this is a very touchy subject for alot of people it is the same as bullying just your harming unprotected animals and it is a know fact that 20,000 animals die every hour how could people do this i swear some people do not have a soul what so ever

on Jan. 11 2014 at 1:47 am
I don't know much about animals but torchering someone is not humanity

on Jan. 11 2014 at 1:44 am
I agree with you

Animals life said...
on Jan. 11 2014 at 1:41 am
You should not be so selfish. Think even about others who LIVE with you on earth

animals life said...
on Jan. 11 2014 at 1:37 am
Who cares about animals nowadays people are very busy to even feed these animals

molly ciris said...
on Dec. 16 2013 at 1:56 pm
                :0 animals are always there for u be there for them!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

cooldude said...
on Nov. 20 2013 at 2:22 pm
this isnt fair

Madmax said...
on Oct. 29 2013 at 1:27 pm
petition for horses torture for fun in Mexico. Horses lovers respond! I will send my petition and I need as many signatures that I can to have the responsible people to be punished for such cruelty. Could not paste the petition link! So, pe-lease, e-mail me and I will forward this petition!

pretty ggirl said...
on Aug. 14 2013 at 8:43 pm
this artical is perfect.and sunshine if yo don't support this artical so shut the f... up.

kisha said...
on Aug. 4 2013 at 5:48 am
I love animals verrrrrryyyyyy much and cant bear thei abuse.I m strictly against this

cherry-lee said...
on May. 20 2013 at 2:03 pm
I agree with you a 100%, because they bleed red just like we do and they have feeling just like we do.someone wouldn't like it if they were treated like animals are.

animals said...
on May. 19 2013 at 11:16 pm
Please stop all animal abuse. Horses are been slaughter and been sold to stores for people to eat. This is so stupid. I would like to see tougher laws for animal abusers and longer jail time and bigger fines to be used to help other animals that are been abused. I want this to end now!!!

Chloelou said...
on Mar. 25 2013 at 2:08 pm
This is animal abuse they are just like us and the people who do that to them they would not like it if it happened to them would they??? Sick people out there x