Pet Abuse Has Become More Frequent and Violent Than Ever Before

A shocking report from the RSPCA reveals that there are now more cases of animal abuse than ever before, and they are becoming increasingly violent and disturbing.

The annual 2014 report shows more than 159,831 complaints registered to the UK animal charity, of which over 20,000 were cases of intentional violent cruelty to animals.

Deeply Disturbing Acts Towards Animals

Some of the horrifying incidents include a rabbit suffering the unimaginable pain of being microwaved to death, a Staffordshire Terrier being brutally kicked, thrown, and having his head smashed in a door, and another dog who had been shot in the head with a crossbow bolt.

Each of the 20,258 cases of deliberate cruelty are deeply disturbing and upsetting. James Yeates, the RSPCA’s chief veterinary officer commented on the situation by saying:

“It is extremely concerning that we are still receiving more than 20,000 complaints about animals being deliberately caused to suffer and that’s 20,000 too many.”

“Most of the complaints we receive involve animals being neglected or not receiving the right care and often we can put that right by offering welfare advice.”

“However, it is shocking that in 2014 people are still being deliberately cruel in what can be disturbingly inventive ways.”

Is Society Becoming More Violent?

The connection between domestic violence and animal abuse has long been known about, with research highlighting that many violent offenders have admitted or been convicted of some form of animal abuse, so these figures beg the question, is society becoming more violent in general?

Animals are often at the receiving end of violence and abuse, as offenders seek to take out their anger and frustration on the vulnerable. What is even more troublesome is the rise in cruel pranks and dares which are filmed and shared online, including “neknomination,” which involved people swallowing fish, frogs and lizards.

These actions highlight the lack of respect and compassion that many people in society have for the lives of other beings, something which is surely at the root cause of all animal abuse.

How Can We Reduce the Abuse?

If we are to reverse the worrying trend of deliberate violent animal abuse cases, we have to look at multiple ways of protecting vulnerable animals and educating people about the true value of life.

Education is vital to changing the way in which animals are perceived. This should start in schools, with pupils being taught about the basic principles of compassion and respect for other beings, and understanding what is and is not an acceptable way to treat them.

We need better community support systems in place so that animal abuse can be reported and investigated more efficiently and effectively, and those who are struggling to look after their pets properly can find help from others in their community.

As well as providing better education and support to prevent animal abuse, tougher laws on offenders need to be implemented so that the government is sending out the right message. Instead of short term bans and fines for animal abuse, convicted abusers should be banned from keeping animals for life.

A worrying statistic from the RSPCA report showed that despite an increase in the number of abuse cases, the number of convictions was down, showing that the legal system is currently failing the animals.

Buying and selling of pets on online sites also needs to be more strictly monitored and regulated, as it is currently too easy for the wrong people to be able to purchase pets, leading to more abuse.

How do you think we can better protect pets and other vulnerable animals from abuse? Please let us know in the comments below.

Photo Credit: Rob Swatski

197 comments

Heather Brophy
Heather Brophyabout a year ago

Abuse an animal you may go to jail, abuse an animal you will go to HELL!

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Siyus Copetallus
Siyus C1 years ago

Thank you for sharing!

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Miki W.
Past Member 2 years ago

A dog starved near to death and the result was :

"A warrant was issued for Christian Barrera and he was arrested and made bond. But his charges have been down graded to a lower court and most likely a small and insignificant (if any) sentence.

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Roberta G.
Roberta G2 years ago

I wonder if pet abuse and all other forms of abuse just seem more prevalent than in the past because of the ease of taking and posting videos on line.

Add to this the fact the public is becoming more aware and less tolerant of animal abuse, and some states have passed laws making
such abuse a punishable offense.

Also, the rapid growth of social media gives what might have been a local case of abuse known to just a few, national exposure. Case in point: the vet in Texas who killed a neighbor's pet cat with a crossbow and boasted about it on Facebook.

So I don't think there is more abuse; we are just more aware of it and finally doing something about it.

btw, goldfish swallowing was a big fad in the 1920s...another illustration that there is nothing new about abuse.

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Miki W.
Past Member 2 years ago

Since nobody goes to jail for abusing animals or a hefty fine ( get them where it hurts most ) people will go on doing horrible things to any animal

Where is the Government,sleeping , where is the Judge, sleeping,,, bloody Hell i am so pissed off ( sorry but that's the only way i can express my feelings )

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Claire Jordan
Claire Jordan2 years ago

I wonder if some of this has to do with mobile phones. Increasingly you see parents not engaging with their children at all, ignoring crying babies and hungry kids because they're too preoccupied by their smart phones, and the same probably applies to pets - they'll become disengaged from their dog or cat and see it as in irritating distraction, rather than aa a person with whom they have a relationship.

Microwaving the rabbit may not have been intended to kill it. There was a sad case some years ago of a boy who microwaved a kitten on the lowest defrost setting, as a joke, thinking that it would be no more than slightly warm and wouldn't do it any harm, but the microwaves damaged the kitten's synovial fluid in some way which caused it to develop severe arthritis and have to be put down.

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Robin H.
Robin H2 years ago

The abuse of an innocent animal is indefensible. All abusers must be severely punished and never have any animal in his or her care in the future. I believe all abusers should have a tattoo on their face, located where it cannot be covered by facial hair or hairstyle. The tattoo would show everyone that such a person is not to be trusted with animals, children or any other defenseless being.

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Doris Khong
Doris K2 years ago

I personally feel that every thing comes from the heart...if you have a KIND heart, you would NEVER abuse, therefore, taking out one's frustration on an innocent pet is NO excuse and its UNFORGIVABLE. To me, pets are there to de-stress and they are the GREATEST comfort so HOW can one still take it out on such an adorable pet and even put it through suffering & pain???!!! I honestly believe the PROBLEM lies in the person, himself or herself and any reasons given are all excuses. Such "humans" should NOT own any pets and PLEASE keep our beloved pets away from impatient, temperamental & violent people.

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jan b.
jan b2 years ago

I suppose this sounds like an excuse and I don't mean it to be at all. But I believe that in the USA
humans abuse pets to take out their frustrations in a terrible way because society has failed them. Also husbands abuse wives---children are abused.........Society is not healthy today at all. There is too much poverty.....too much violence....and people are sad...depressed....and angry .

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Julia Cabrera-Woscek

Doesn't cost anything to be humane.

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