Most animals are not aggressive by nature. A leading cause of aggressive behavior in animals is when a person chooses to abuse them. “A wide range of actions from animal neglect to violence against animals can be considered animal cruelty” (ProQuest Staff). In many cases, an abused animal fears humans. Because of that fear, they are more likely to bite and attack not only people, but also other animals. Many of the abused animals are unable to trust again, causing an uprising in the number of animals in shelters. When people abuse animals, the animals become aggressive or frightened and end up in shelters.
Therefore, “I see a direct link in the number of animals that end up in area shelters and the cases of abuse and neglect” explains Cindy Morris from Paws in the City, an all-volunteer nonprofit organization in
. Animals that are abused often become aggressive and end up in shelters because they have exhibited hostile behavior and their owners do not want to be attacked. Death row might be the fate of an abused animal because potential animal owners do not want an aggressive animal as a pet. Most animals are not aggressive by nature and usually “bite out of fear not aggression,” because of the abuse they have endured (Morris). It is often difficult to teach an abused animal to trust humans again, but not impossible. It would take massive amounts of patience on the human’s part to gain an animal’s trust and reverse the effects of the abuse. Dallas, Texas
In fact, “due to the fear an animal obtains from abuse, the effects done to the animal are usually irreversible” (Robinson). Many animals gain scars and amputated limbs due to the amount of physical abuse the animals received. There have been “cases of dogs that were burned over most of their body from chemicals being poured on them” resulting in large amounts of scars all over the victim’s body (Morris). Another form of abuse that affects animals is puppy mills, where dogs are bred over and over in order to produce a large supply of puppies to sell. The dogs and puppies are usually placed in cages and are neglected. They are not cared for properly and are often kept in unsanitary conditions. When rescued, they usually are malnourished and diseased. In addition, they do not have much contact with people, and as a result, they fear humans and are difficult to train and interact with people and children.
Abuse has a tremendous effect on animals. It causes animals to either be aggressive or reserved and frightened. Shelters take in massive amounts of abused dogs that will probably end up on death row, because the permanent effects make the potential owners unwilling to adopt the pets. Abused animals are more likely to lash out at any time for any reason, while reserved and frightened animals are not willing to interact. Many dogs can be saved but require ample time and money that the shelters do not have.
Morris, Cindy. "Animal Cruelty." E-mail interview. 6 October 2011.
ProQuest Staff. "At Issue: Animal Cruelty." ProQuest LLC. 2011: n.p. SIRS Researcher.
Web. 10 October 2011. < http://sks.sirs.com/cgi-bin/hst-article-display?id=S200008280-0-285&artno=0000307333&type=ART>
Robinson, Dwayne. Humane Society. “Animal Cruelty." Telephone interview. 6 October