Over the centuries, animals have suffered from cruelty from humans. In the United States, animals are beaten, neglected, or forced to struggle for survival. Animals have been inflicted with pain from humans for reasons other than self-defense. They have been slaughtered for their food and fur for personal gain in profit. In a majority of cases they have even been abused for someone’s own personal amusement or out of rage filled impulses. In some cases animals are found and rescued. They are given the second chance in life to experience what life should be like compared to what they once had.
Many jurisdictions around the world have enacted laws that forbid cruelty to animals but most of the time they vary by country and the use or practice. In Australia, Japan and Italy, cruelty to animals is illegal by law and any person caught will face extreme punishment. The United States is the only country to have a federal law that regulates the treatment of animals in research, exhibition, transport, and by dealers known as the Animal Welfare Acts of 1966 which has been amended throughout the years.
Some states do not seem to take animal cruelty as seriously though. According to the Humane Society, a good felony anti-cruelty law should protect all animals, apply to first-time offenders, carry large fines and prison time, with no exceptions. Convicted abusers should be required to get counseling at their own expense, and prohibit abusers from owning any animals as pets. The legal definition of animal cruelty, penalties given, and the consistency and outcomes of punishments within a state should assist in seeking a greater protection for not only animals but human companions as well.
In theory, there are a variety of reasons why people abuse animals. Animal cruelty covers a wide range of actions that can initially be broken down into two main categories; passive and active cruelty. The first is acts of omission, meaning abuse from lack of action to take care of their animals. Passive cruelty can be referred to cases of neglect of animals. Some examples of neglect are starvation, dehydration, parasite infestations, allowing a collar to grow into an animal’s skin, no shelter in extreme weather, unsanitary conditions with no food or water and failure to seek veterinary care when necessary. Active cruelty also referred to as non-accidental injury, is implied when a person deliberately or intentionally causes harm to an animal. This action can also be linked between abuse within the home of women and children. This reveals the family member or person has a serious psychological issue and may commit more actions of violence.
The origin of the association between animal abuse and domestic violence remains unclear as do the factors that make the connection. This connection between the cruelties could be better understood in a larger context of the human-animal bond. “The evidence demonstrating the importance of the human-animal bond in human functioning and...