by Elisa Black-Taylor
The safe side of the fence
Good morning readers. I call this article "Know Your Neighbors!" Do you really know your neighbors? I'm fortunate in that I do. I know their feelings about pets and kids and everything else I feel important. Fortunately, we're all on the same page in my neighborhood. We watch out for each others pets and children. No animal abusers on my street.
This is a story that will help all pet lovers. I'd planned to write this story before doing the cat declawing issue, but in a way I'm glad this one waited. In the declawing article I introduced you to the Family Watchdog site. That site lists all registered sex offenders living in the U.S. They are required by law to register an address or face a fine or jail.
Wouldn't it be great if convicted animal abusers faced the same type of registry? To a certain extent they do. Check out this website: Pet Abuse. I went ahead and signed up for their free membership. The site is very easy to use. Select the state and type of abuse involved and up pops the cases for that area. You can see the status of the case including who's been charged, alleged, open case to who's been convicted. The abuse covers cats, dogs, birds, sheep, rabbits, reptiles, etc. Just click on the animal abuse you want to check out. I'm pleased this site also lists open cases.
I will warn you there's more abuse going on than you'd think.
Please bookmark this pictures-of-cats page as I'm going to offer more links. I feel the pet abuse site is important since animal abuse often extends to people abuse.
Imagine this scenario. You read my article and decide to check out the site. You find there's an animal abuser living three houses down from you. Not really knowing this neighbor, you file this information in the back of your mind. Your subconscious still tells you to watch out when "Sparky" or "Fluffy" goes outside for a few minutes. After all, you've read this man shot his own dog to death three years ago. This man has a wife and a child. I've already discussed how pet abuse can extend to spousal and child abuse. I've also informed my readers how children of abusers may torture and kill pets. YOUR pet could be in danger from any member of this family.
You will also be on heightened alert from any sounds (like screams, yelps, or arguments) coming from this address. This pet abuse site and the knowledge you learned from it are disturbing. Yet it could save many lives. Especially the lives of an unknowing pet who wanders onto this man's property.
The next site I'd like to introduce my readers to is the Animal Legal Defense Fund. Their goal is to make animal abusers register in much the same way as child abusers. Their website has a link to a proposal being made for the state of California. If this law passes it will be the first of it's kind. Convicted animal abusers will have their photo, physical address, physical description and criminal history make public via the internet. This will give the police heads up when an abuser is in the neighborhood. It will also allow shelters and rescues to know when an abuser comes in and tries to adopt an animal.
Merrily, your comment on my story about conduct disorder was the inspiration for this article. At least you know to protect your animals around this "neighbor."
I started my own petition at Care2. Because the only way this registry will work is to make it a federal law. A few states are acting on this at a state level. I want to take it to a federal level. That will show uniformity overall. All states need to play by the same rules. So I started my own petition site. The Animal Legal Defense Fund has one on their front page that will take this to a state level. I went into Care2 and made my own. I encourage everyone to pass it around. I'll be researching someone at the federal government level and see they get the petition.
Care2 has a few petition sites, but I still added one of my own. I'm picky about wanting it a national law. Petition (need to log in first)
Everyone please feel free to sign ALL of these.
I encourage my readers in other countries to tackle this at a national level. Animal lovers everywhere need to step up and demand knowledge as to whether or not we live next to an animal abuser. Perhaps if this law is passed the police will stop looking the other way when called out on an animal abuse call.
I've told my readers on several occasions of the experience I had with the law and an animal abuser. The officers who showed up to my call refused to smell a dog who had been covered in kerosene.Their response was "Who would do that to a dog." Then they threatened to lock me up if they had to return to another "nuisance" call. If there had been a national registry with the man's name on it, maybe my call would have been taken seriously.
I got the dog to safety but my car stank for weeks. I DESPISE my home town because of this incident. If a group of children hadn't run up and informed me what was happening, that dog would be dead now. And like most people, I thought the police would help. I was wrong.
I'm going to end this now. If I keep thinking of my own personal dealings with animal abuse I'll get mad again and stay that way for days. It isn't good for me and prevents my next story from entering my head.
Just in case any of you want "homework," please read the articles on this page: Expose Animal Abusers
P.S. As I end this I just read Merrily's neighbor has just killed another dog and the sheriff did NOTHING! Surprise surprise. I'd REALLY better go now or Michael(PoC) will be bailing me out of jail.