What Adults Can Do About This Very Serious Matter
If you have witnessed, know of, or suspect that a child has intentionally hurt an animal, report the incident immediately to your local police department, local ASPCA, or other local animal-welfare organization.
Animal abuse in children is a serious matter. It should never be ignored and requires professional advice and further investigation. Your involvement in such a situation can help an animal in jeopardy and could potentially aid a very disturbed young person.
Do not approach the parent as you are apt to come face to face with a hostile adult-version of the child you are reporting. You can, however, and probably should report the incident to the principal, guidance counselor, school psychologist, or social worker at the child’s school.
Talk to your children and advise them never to approach another child, adult, or adolescent who is abusing an animal. Instead, call a parent or guardian and police au- thorities immediately, and remain safely away from what could be a dangerous situation.
Further reading for parents
Fostering the bond between Children and Animals: The empathy Connection. The Doris Day Foundation. Tips for building empathy between pets and children. Teaching the language of emotion, and nine specific steps to empathy, including illustrations. Useful for teachers, parents, and counselors.
Help Stop Cruelty A wonderful article detailing how to help children recognize cruelty to animals. As a parent or teacher, you may peruse it and decide if you would like to share it with young people. Please visit this site!
Websites on the Topic of Animal Abuse
• www.pet-abuse.com Action alerts, reporting, asking for help, types of abuse.
• ASPCA’s Reporting FAQ Reporting, how and where, recognizing, laws about, kids and animal cruelty.
• Humane Society’s First Strike Materials Information and suggestions for action, community action, neighborhood watch for animals, and Fact Sheets. Concise information for parents, teenagers, and concerned citizens.
• Stop Puppy Mills – Inside a Puppy Mill
• Humane Society’s information about dogfighting
and animal hoarding.
• HubPages.com Information on animal testing.
We hope that you never have to make use of this information but if do you we hope that you will feel better prepared to act in a reasonable and responsible manner. Remember, the staff at Animal General stands ready to help. Please call Karen Heidgerd, Practice Administrator at 212-501-9600 should you need advice regarding such a matter. Help us safeguard those voiceless innocents who are exploited and abused daily by the few violent individuals within our society.