Addressing Animal Abuse
In the past few months, there has been an increase in reports of animal cruelty. Laws exist against this crime but police officers rarely enforce these laws. In fact, Morelli says that when incidents are reported, nothing is done.
Shauna Morello, President, Cayo Animal Welfare Society: “Most of the police are unwilling to take reports. People have been hung up on like literally hung up on “we don’t handle that.” and “click” the phone goes. I did see a subsequent discussion that COMPOL gave where he said yes it’s the law but we don’t really have resources to deal with that because we’re too busy so that was pretty disappointing and then I saw a subsequent interview with him where he was discussing his officers shooting that dog and they’re doing an investigation but I don’t believe anything will come of that. Just this weekend we had a police unit in Santa Elena rundown a puppy in the street and leave it broken and crying and they just left it there so you know what COMPOL is saying is that they have policies and procedures, that’s nothing to me. And I know a lot of people think it’s ridiculous to worry about things like that but what people don’t realize is that people that abuse animals and are cruel to them intentionally move on to doing worse things. There has been study after study showing that they start off with crimes against vulnerable things like animals and they move on to harming children, women, robberies, murders it’s a proven thing so we really need to take intentional animal neglect seriously and animal cruelty seriously. Is a long strong enough? Well, there’s two laws we deal with one is the Dog Act which basically outlines the responsibilities that owners have. I think it’s certainly strong enough it’s just not enforced by any of the town or village or city councils. Certainly the Cruelty and Neglect Act is not strong enough. The fines in those legislation are too small and even if they were enforced it’s not enough so, I mean to enforce those the is going to take action other than just doing occasional poison culls because that doesn’t solve the problems people just get new dogs and keep doing what they’re doing and they end up going in a cycle.”