Harsher penalties for people who intentionally hurt / kill animals!
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Too many animal abusers and murderers are not being held fully accountable for their actions, so the pets themselves, and the people who lose their family members to these people, are not getting the justice they need to be able to move on, and often live in fear that any future pets may also be targeted!
We, the undersigned, request that the justice system update the definition of pet from property to non-human family member, and ensure that both animal and owner have more legal rights.
Additionally, we request that the law to be changed so that there are clear and harsh penalties that actually do JUSTICE for people who steal, intentionally hurt, or murder pets, including prison sentences, mental health checks and potentially rehabilitation to ensure that they understand that animals are not there for their personal amusement. A quick fine and a charge of “criminal damage” doesn’t give any justice to the people who have lost a family member.
Why I’ve started this petition:
As a founder of a local cat rescue, I have been involved in numerous animal lives. I have adopted several of the cats myself and several were lost because they got to our care too late.
Personally, however, I lost 4 cats in 12 months and it was heart-breaking. Three of those were to natural causes. The fourth was a year-old kitten whom I had hand-reared from 3 weeks old. He was left for dead on the road directly outside my house from a hit and run by someone who just didn’t care that they’d killed an innocent family pet and didn’t even bother to stop, and I was distraught to the point where I just couldn’t function. I cried for a week straight, especially if anyone talked to me, and ended up on anti-depressants, which then resulted in me losing my job!
One of my friends, Maxine Hird, has now lost FOUR CATS IN ONE WEEK to a vengeful neighbour. She was “lucky” enough to have closure because all 4 of them made their way home, however her vet bills are now sky high and all 4 still passed away despite the emergency intervention. One of her elderly neighbours is still missing a cat that has most likely been targeted by the same person, but hasn’t even been able to have the closure of knowing what’s happened to their beloved family pet. She says, “life without your beloved pet is empty, it’s never going to be the same again - there's a large gap where that family member was and it hurts so much.”
Another of my friends, who has asked to remain anonymous, had one cat who lost all sensation in his rear leg after being shot, he then went missing (presumably shot), and another who was found to have over 20 pellets in his body when he had to have an x-ray for something unrelated.
Losing a pet to natural causes is heart-breaking in itself. Losing a pet, because someone has intentionally caused it harm, is 10 times worse.
And it’s even harder for the family to grieve and put their loss behind them when the person who has abused and/or murdered their beloved family member is given a slap on the wrist because it’s “just a pet”, so they are expected to live their lives knowing that the person who has caused them so much hurt is still out there and still able to destroy other families with their cruelty.
There are many cases where people have started out harming animals, and gone on to murder people, yet there are still too many people who continue to hurt animals without fear of accountability.
Dog-fighting is rising again in popularity, so stealing dogs to be thrown into the ring to fight ones that have been trained (especially bull-breed dogs), or stealing smaller pets, like rabbits, cats, etc., for blooding / training the dogs to fight, is at an all-time high since it became illegal. Often the smaller pets will be numbered / coloured and bets taken on which one can survive the longest!
Poisoning is also on the rise! Sometimes by leaving poisoned treats, or treats barbed with nails or glass, in popular dog-walking areas, however, there have been a number of targeted poisonings, including people leaving out bowls of anti-freeze for neighbour’s cats. These are massively traumatic for the owner, who can quickly rack up massive vet bills trying to save their family, when the outcome is never guaranteed, even if the poisoning is caught quickly.
PLEASE help to be the change to ensure that animals are protected in the future and no-one needs to go through the heart-break of losing their family members to the torture and sadistic tendencies of others.
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