Norwich Bulletin - 6/15/2008
Do You Know Who You Live With|
Pick a date that would make a good mate! What does this very old saying have to do with the usual Pet Talk column? A lot! A very serious topic – animal neglect and cruelty! Where does it come from? What allows people to stay inside, warm and fed, while their poor starving dog is tied out with indifferent or no shelter, freezing inn sub-zero weather or baking in the hot sun!
What causes a child or adult to deliberately injure or kill an animal? For decades educated experts have put forth many theories such as poverty, too much money, too much time on someone's hands, poor education, etc. etc.
Many of us in animal rescue know that common sense tells us that teaching kindness, showing kindness and empathy to our infants, toddlers and older children, as well as being kind to our partners, relatives, and friends is critical if our goal is to raise a loving, caring adult who would never think of hurting an animal – or a person.
The lack of empathy – or "feeling" how the other person or animal feels, is at the bottom of most pet abuse and cruelty. A child learns caring, compassion, and love from their parent(s). Children who are not shown that type of care, do not have the benefit of feeling loved. So, before bringing children into the world a person generally first chooses a mate. That makes it very important as to who we "hang around with", date, partner, marry, and/or cohabitate with.
Good looks and a fast car and money to burn, does not mean that he or she is caring and kind and will treat you the way you deserve to be treated. While most animal abuse and cruelty is perpetrated by men, women are also implicated here. Sometimes both partners are guilty. How they treat each other, and their children is how they treat their pets. Or maybe the rule of thumb is how people treat each other and their pets, is how their children are treated and learn how to treat others.
Our standards for selecting our dates and partners have focused in recent years on such things as being attractive, or having lots of possessions. Many times people will overlook some serious character flaws if they are being wines and dined – remarks that are crude or vulgar and even being treated with disrespect is tolerated because people do not want to be alone. We think that dysfunctional movie and rock stars are role models.
Most of our children do not even know about famous inventors, engineers, research scientists, police officers or firemen who have worked hard to improve lives, not just for their family but for the rest of the population too. These are the people who should be our heroes.
When that geeky boy who studies hard and is good to his parents, asks that young girl for a date, perhaps she should stop and consider that he will be a kind and loving husband and father (I married that geeky boy and got the most wonderful gentle and kind animal loving man that anyone could ever ask for). And that quiet "wall flower" girl who dresses modestly, and is soft spoken will probably make the best wife and mother. Children and pets raised by these people are very lucky.
Most serial killers, such as John Wayne Gacey, Jeffrey Dahmer, the "Iceman", Ted Bundy and so many more started their careers off by abusing animals. We at Helping Paws have seen evidence of this abuse - our first abuse case so many years ago was a kitten who had two legs broken in several places by a group of pre-teen boys.
Then there was a kitten who had an eye gouged out; a kitten with a foot cut off by a child and a young cat that was stabbed in the side by an angry 14 year old boy. If you want to see how crazy this world has become, then visit the website www.pet-abuse.com. These stories are disturbing to say the least – but if it opens one person's eyes and helps save one animal's life, it will be worth it.
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