Dear Next President:
Animal cruelty is more common than you might think. All across America, even though it’s illegal, people are still showing cruelty to animals, weather it is in the form of puppy mills, animal hoarding, or cruel animal sports like dog fighting or greyhound racing. When you know someone who is abusing animals, it could be something more. According to The Humane Society of the United States, 65% of people who abuse animals were also arrested for battery against other humans It’s not okay to abuse and hurt animals just because we are powerful enough to do so, and it has to stop. I believe the next president should raise punishment and strongly enforce all animal cruelty laws, including puppy mills, animal hoarding, and cruel animal sports
Although bigger things are happening in the world like gun violence and wars, there are still little things that are just as horrible. Puppy mills are one of those things. According to the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA), puppy mills are unsanitary facilities where dogs are repeatedly bred until they can no longer reproduce, in which cases the dogs are inhumanely killed. These dogs often live in wire cages that injure and scrape their legs. These cages often have no food or water in them, and the mothers and puppies can be infected with anything from fleas to pneumonia. Also, because of the lack of genetic diversity, the puppies can have behavioral issues such as fear, anxiety, and aggression. Since profit comes first in these operations, the puppy millers will often make fake “papers” each dog. My friend fosters puppies from puppy mills, and always says that the are difficult and unsocial. The puppies from mills are terrified and wary of all new places or people, probably scared of the environment they came from. These horrible practices and conditions of puppy milling have to stop.
Also, across America, many mentally unstable people are hoarding animals. ASPCA estimates that there are about 900-2,000 new cases annually. ASPCA also says that most hoarders houses are often dirty and deteriorated with broken windows and furniture. The animals are kept in small cages or left to roam. There is often vomit, urine, and feces on the floor, and the entire house smells of ammonia. The hoarders themselves can be suffering from depression, paranoia, delusional thinking, or other illness. Most hoarders believe that their animals are happy and healthy, while truthfully they are treating their animals inhumanely, and ultimately, abusing them. I think the next president should introduce required annual mental health checks to prevent mentally sick people from hoarding animals. Animal hoarding is specifically addressed in very few states, and I believe that it should become illegal nationwide.
Although some animals love to play and run naturally, some animals are forced to run or fight inhumanely for the the profit of owners or spectators. Greyhound racing is one of these sports. ASPCA says that there are are still more than 20 dog racing tracks open, more than half in Florida. Also, over 80,000 young, healthy greyhounds have been taken into the racing industry, and over 909 have been inhumanely executed as part of the “sport” for the soul reason that they are “unable to race”. There have also been almost 11,730 greyhound injuries including broken legs and backs, crushed skulls, fractured ribs, paralysis, and electrocutions. This gruesome practice forces muzzled dogs to run as fast as they can against other dogs, possibly full of performance enhancing drugs, sometimes racing back to back without breaks until the dogs collapse from exhaustion. But the worst thing is, according to countless organizations like ASPCA, People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA), and the Humane Society of the United States, these horrific practices are still technically legal. These amazing dogs are not ours to take and force to run just for our profit. The next president needs to make all dog racing federally illegal, because this must come to an end.
In the end, animals are not ours to push around, race, fight, and do other things just for our profit and enjoyment. Animals should be loving loving, happy pets. My three dogs love to run around our property, play together, and chase the occasional bunny or squirrel. My two cats love to sit in the sun and look at birds through the window, and curl up on the couch at night with my family and me. That’s what pets are supposed to do. I know that the next president has big issues, but sometimes the little ones are just as important. The president should pay attention to animals and their rights, strongly enforce animal cruelty laws, and bring the people who break them to justice. The president needs to fix this, and for the sake of our animals, it needs to stop
Animal Cruelty American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals <http://www.aspca.org/animal-cruelty>
Animal Cruelty and Human Violence Humane Society of the United States 2008 <http://www.humanesociety.org/issues/abuse_neglect/qa/cruelty_violence_connection_faq.html?credit=web_id235304807>
The Animal-Cruelty Syndrome The New York Times Magazine June 13, 2010
Animal Abuse and Human Abuse: Partners in Crime People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals <http://www.peta.org/issues/companion-animal-issues/companion-animals-factsheets/animal-abuse-human-abuse-partners-crime/>