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animal abuse

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Seventy-five percent of violent offenders have early records of animal cruelty. ... or shelter, cruelly beats, mutilates, or cruelly kills an animal is guilty ... – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: animal abuse


1
animal abuse
module 6
Family Violence Protocol Integrated Training for
Law Enforcement, Social Services, and Advocates
Merced County Animal Control
HSA-SAS mod6animal.ppt (5/07)
2
Contents
  • The Link
  • Defined
  • Laws
  • Is it Abuse?
  • Reporting
  • Who and What
  • Cross-Reporting

3
The Link
4
Between Animal Human Abuse
  • Research shows strong correlation between animal
    abuse, child abuse, and domestic violence.
  • Seventy-five percent of violent offenders have
    early records of animal cruelty.
  • Animal abuse is a warning sign that people in the
    home may not be safe.

5
More on the Link
  • Child witnesses to animal abuse are also at
    greater risk of becoming abusers themselves.
  • Penal Code 11199 allows employees of county child
    and adult protective service agencies to report
    suspected animal abuse for investigation.
  • However, there are no laws mandating reporting
    animal abuse.

6
More on the Link
  • Law enforcement, social workers, domestic
    violence advocates, health providers,
    veterinarians, and animal control officers all
    need to understand the link between animal abuse
    and other forms of family violence.

7
Defined
8
Legal Definition
  • California Penal Code defines animal cruelty as
    the malicious or intentional maiming, mutilation,
    torture, or wounding of a living animal. Any
    person who
  • Overworks, tortures, torments, deprives of
    necessary food, drink, or shelter, cruelly beats,
    mutilates, or cruelly kills an animal is guilty
    of a misdemeanor or felony.
  • It is a misdemeanor to
  • Own, possess, keep, or train a dog with the
    intent to engage the animal in exhibition
    fighting.
  • Be knowingly present as a spectator at an
    exhibition of fighting dogs.
  • Willfully abandon any animal.

9
Assessing Animal Abuse
  • Identifying animal abuse or neglect can be
    difficult.
  • Look at the entire situation to determine if an
    animal is being abused or neglected, and
    ascertain whether the abuse is intentional or
    malicious.
  • What seems like neglect may not fall within the
    legal definition of animal abuse.

10
California 2007 Law Updates
  • It is illegal to tether, fasten, chain, tie, or
    restrain a dog to a dog house, tree, fence, or
    any other stationary object. (HS 122335, New)
  • Animal and cock fighting punishments are
    increased. (P.C. 597b, Amended)
  • It is illegal to leave an animal in an unattended
    motor vehicle under conditions that endanger its
    health or well-being. (P.C. 597.7 New)

11
Is it Abuse?
  • A neighbor keeps his dog on a cable day and night
    in the backyard.
  • As long as the dog has food, water, and shelter,
    this does not fall within the legal definition of
    cruelty.
  • The horse in the neighboring field stands in the
    wind and rain all day.
  • As long as the horse has food, water, and a place
    to stand up, and can turn around and lie down in
    an area not covered in water, this does not fall
    within the legal definition of cruelty.
  • A neighbor is shooting cats with a pellet gun.
  • This is at least a misdemeanor and may be charged
    as a felony.

12
What to Do
  • If it seems a dog or cat has been poisoned
  • Take them to the vet immediately.
  • Save any food products that may have been thrown
    over the fence that they may have eaten it can
    be important evidence.
  • A toxicology analysis will need to be done on the
    animal to determine why it got sick or died
    before cruelty can be proven.
  • If a situation is unhealthy for an animal, but
    does not fall within the legal definition of
    animal abuse, approach the owner and suggest
    different approaches to how they treat their pet.

13
Reporting
14
Reporting to Animal Control
  • If the incident is within city limits, contact
    that city's police department.
  • If the reported incident occurs outside of city
    limits, contact County Animal Control.
  • County Animal Control handles calls to the
    unincorporated area and has agreements to work
    within the cities if child or adult protective
    services is involved.
  • County Animal Control officers are sworn law
    enforcement personnel.

15
Reporting (Continued)
  • Report details so that Animal Control can
    investigate.
  • Ask other witnesses to also report.
  • Do not wait until an animal's life is in danger.
  • If you suspect abuse, document it and report it
    to law enforcement.

16
What to tell Animal Control
  • WHAT is happening may include information about
    an animal's physical condition and/or an act that
    was committed against the animal.
  • WHO is committing the offense. Give the name and
    description of the person or persons, car, and
    license plate number.
  • WHERE is the incident occurring. Give a specific
    location, including address and cross streets.
  • WHEN did the incident occur. Give the date and
    time.

17
Cross-Reporting
  • Animal Control officers are mandated reporters of
    child abuse and neglect.
  • If Animal Control sees children are possibly
    neglected or abused, it is cross-reported to CWS
  • If Animal Control sees an elderly person or
    dependent adult may have been abused or
    neglected, it is cross-reported to APS

18
Know that . . .
  • A Womans Place does not allow animals in
    shelters.
  • Foster parents do not allow pets.
  • Animal Control may be able to find a short-term
    animal foster home.
  • Releasing the animal to Animal Control is an
    option.
  • Law enforcement should contact Animal Control
    while on scene.

19
Module 6Animal Abuse
Presented by Art Ferrario Merced County Animal
Control Contact Information 209-385-7436 or
209-564-2262
Family Violence Protocol Integrated Training for
Law Enforcement, Social Services, and Advocates
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