Confronting Animal Cruelty
Animal Abuse is Often Hidden in the Shadows of Our Communities
Animal cruelty is a war we must fight on many fronts: the war against ignorance and indifference; the war against violence and sadistic behavior; and the war against commercial exploitation, where animals are treated as commodities with no regard to their welfare and dignity as living beings.
Animals are victims of cruelty in many ways. Neglected dogs kept on chains or tethers. Companion animals victimized by family violence or abandoned to the streets and highways. Horses and farm animals left without adequate food, water or veterinary care. And victims of impulsive attacks by sadistic individuals who enjoy power and control.
Then there are the industries of cruelty perpetuated for financial gain: the horrific breeding practices and appalling kennel conditions of puppy mills; the transportation of horses to slaughter in Mexico; the brutal worlds of dogfighting and cockfighting; and the cruel confinement of exotic animals kept in small cages as objects of curiosity or as future trophies for illegal hunters.
It is for every animal suffering at the hands of callous and brutal people that THLN exists.
Since 1975, the Network has been a leading advocate at the Texas Legislature for strong animal protection laws. Examples include:
Cruelly treat a homeless dog or feral cat;
"Recklessly" commit cruelty to any animal. (Prosecutors no longer have to prove that a person intended to commit cruelty);
Kill or cause serious bodily injury "in a cruel manner" to a non-livestock animal;
Fail to provide water to an animal in a person's custody;
"Torture"* an animal classified as "livestock" (includes horses, cattle, sheep, pigs and goats).
*"Torture" is now defined as "any act that causes unjustifiable pain or suffering."
For all of the animals who find no mercy at the hands of those who control their fate, THLN will continue to be their advocate at the Texas Legislature and to the people of Texas.
Click below for information about reporting animal cruelty:
http://www.aspca.org/news/national/03-27-09.html#1 - 3.28.09 | If you suspect an animal is being abused, don’t keep it to yourself— report it to your local authorities.
3.08.09 | State lawmakers are throwing some new legislation to the dogs. If you're involved in any way in animal fighting, members of the Texas House want to send you straight to jail. It's an effort to cut back on animal cruelty as well as keep our children safe.
www.pet-abuse.com - 7.03.08 | When people can no longer care for a pet, or if their pets have had babies that they cannot care for, many people opt to place an ad in a newspaper or website advertising the unwanted animals as "free to a good home". While intentions are usually good in these situations, we strongly advise against this approach. "Free" is all too often seen as "worthless" in the eye of the beholder.
Dallas Morning News - 6.25.08 | Several new animal control measures will soon become law in Dallas under regulations overwhelmingly approved today by the Dallas City Council.
4.14.08 | Animal cruelty is a vice, and our society should fight it with every ounce of energy we can muster. Abusing animals is a moral issue, and it commands the attention of people of conscience, lawmakers, and corporations. Given the public's love and appreciation for animals, we have a built-in advantage in taking on human-caused abuse and exploitation.
THLN has several Texas licensed attorneys who have volunteered to consult with people regarding animal law issues. HOWEVER, we do not deal with animal cruelty issues or adoption issues. We do not have an animal shelter, nor do our members foster animals as part of THLN.
If your inquiry involves a legal question that CANNOT be answered by contacting your local city animal control or local sheriff (or if the local law enforcement is refusing to help), you may contact us via email at "firstname.lastname@example.org" or using our contact form above. The inquiry will be forwarded to the appropriate person for a timely response. Please note that our attorneys are board members who volunteer their time as their private legal practice permits. Please give us 1-3 days to respond in most instances; however, during a legislative session, it may take a little longer.
Other outstanding sources of information are the Southwest Regional office of HSUS, the SPCA of Texas, your local humane organization, and/or law enforcment. You may contact the SPCA and HSUS at the contact information listed below.
SPCA of Texas
2400 Lone Star Drive
Dallas, TX 75212
Houston Humane Society
14700 Almeda Rd, Houston, 77053
P (713) 433-6421
Note: Go to the "Contact HHS" and click on Sgt. Joe Guerra for cruelty issues in the Houston area.
The Humane Society of the United States
Central Regional Office
4101 W. Green Oaks
#305 - Box 253
Arlington, Texas 76016