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Articles Tagged with: Pets
Link Between Animal Abuse and Domestic Violence

Studies Show a Correlation Between Animal Abuse and Domestic Violence

In light of the recent Puppy Doe case, we’re discussing the link between animal abuse and domestic violence and why it’s important to say something if you see something.

When you report animal abuse, you are likely helping other members of the family in addition to the animal.

*For example, 71% of women seeking shelter at a safe house for battered partners who reported owning a pet reported that their partner had threatened and/or actually hurt or killed one or more of their pets, although it was not easy for them to discuss. In one study, 26 women who had been the subjects of domestic violence reported that their male partners had also verbally and/or physically abused the household pet(s), yet the majority of the women were unwilling to discuss it with their veterinarian.3

Other studies have shown that children who live in violent households are more likely to be cruel to animals. In a survey of 860 college students regarding family violence and animal abuse, 60% of students who reported witnessing or perpetrating animal cruelty as a child also reported experiences with child maltreatment or domestic violence.

DEFINING ABUSE

Animal cruelty, abuse, and neglect are defined differently, according to the intent of the perpetrator. According to the AVMA

  • Animal cruelty is any deliberate act that, by intention or neglect, causes an animal unnecessary pain or suffering, including inflicting pain on an animal for the abuser’s enjoyment or amusement.
  • Animal abuse is the maltreatment of an animal regardless of the perpetrator’s intent, motivation, or mental condition. The perpetrator’s deliberate intent distinguishes cruelty from abuse.
  • Animal neglect is defined as the failure to provide an animal sufficient water, food, shelter, and/or veterinary care; lack of grooming; and lack of sanitation. These failures may be the result of ignorance, poverty, or other extenuating circumstances. This is the most commonly investigated situation.

*This blog post has been reposted from an article called How to Recognize Animal Abuse and What to do About it by the Veterinary Team Brief by Lisa Bourazak, DVM, MPT, Kate Creevy DVM, MS, DACVIM, and Karen Cornell DVM, PhD, DACVS.


Middleboro Puppies Update: Getting Stronger Every Day

They’re Playing Through the Day and Sleeping Through the Night

We’ve promised to give you regular updates on the Middleboro Puppies who were rescued during a drug and weapons raid on a home in Middleboro, MA back on October 3, so here’s a little something on how they’re doing. They’ve been in the care of ARL foster parents for almost a month now and are making enormous progress. One of our foster parents shared this little tidbit about her foster pups whom she has lovingly named Franny and Ollie.

Franny is much smaller than her brother…but she is very rambunctious and usually in charge.  She likes to chat (and has the cutest little bark) and she also likes to follow us everywhere and cuddle up on your lap the minute you sit down.  She loves food and she loves playing hard and napping hard with her brother.

Ollie is just the sweetest puppy.  His beautiful eyes just melt your heart.  He is very gentle and calm for a puppy (I don’t think that we have ever heard him bark) and he is SO interested in people…and cats.  He is also very smart…very good with the food puzzles.

They both sleep through the night very well.  They love to play with sticks and chase each other in circles in our backyard. It’s amazing in three weeks how much they have grown and thrived from the condition they were in when rescued. It really makes Jon and I grateful for all the components of the League that make outcomes like this possible. They are amazing little pups that are going to make wonderful companions and bring immense joy to their future adopters!” ~ Amelia Hughes

When the puppies arrived at the ARL they were in terrible condition. All the the puppies were emaciated and dehydrated, covered in feces and riddled with worms. You can imagine how grateful we are to have a network of foster parents who care for these little guys and gals until they are healthy and strong enough to be adopted. The puppies still have a way to go and are not yet available for adoption, but we’ll let you know as soon as they are! Read their story.

Franny and Ollie play outside in the leaves.

Franny and Ollie play outside in the leaves in their adorable sweaters. Photo Credit: Amelia Hughes


UPDATE: Middleboro Puppies Getting Stronger in Foster Care

Puppies Are Receiving Lots of TLC in Foster Care

One of our foster parents sent this picture of her two foster pups! How adorable are they? Photo: Amelia Hughes

A foster parent sent this picture of her two foster pups! Aren’t they just the cutest?
Photo: Amelia Hughes

We are happy to report that the puppies seized during a drug and weapons raid in Middleboro, MA on October 2 are all making excellent progress!

In spite of their rough start on life, these little guys and gals are snugly, playful, and sweet-as-can-be. The thirteen puppies have been sent to all three of our adoption centers are currently living with foster families in an environment where they can socialize with people and other dogs and get the TLC they so desperately need.

We’d like to thank all of our foster parents who are taking such excellent care of the puppies until they are healthy and strong enough to be available for adoption!

Please note that the puppies are NOT yet available for adoption, but we’ll keep you poster on their story and let you know as soon as they’re at our shelters.

Watch the video below from the Cape Cod Times for more about the four puppies that are down on Cape Cod.


Puppy Doe Update 10/16

Puppy Doe Investigation Making Progress

Work continues to identify who severely abused Puppy Doe, a young adult female dog dumped in a quiet neighborhood in Quincy, Massachusetts.

Norfolk County District Attorney Michael W. Morrissey and the Quincy Police Department are the only organizations releasing official details on the investigation.  To update the public on the progress of the investigation , the District Attorney released the following statement last week:

On behalf of my office, the Quincy Police Department, and the Animal Rescue League of Boston, I am grateful for the hundreds of calls and tips that have been forthcoming in the criminal investigation into the torture of Puppy Doe. We have been inundated with tips, concerns and offers of assistance from around the world.

As Paul Keenan, Quincy Police Chief, has said, “Please be assured that we are following up with each tip received even those that have taken us out of state.”

Many calls have been received requesting updated information on the status and progress of the investigation. As with all criminal investigations, we are unable to discuss publically the specifics of this very active and ongoing investigation. To do so would not only compromise the investigation, but would also violate the ethical rules to which this office is bound. The information we have received to date from the public has been invaluable in guiding our actions through the course of the investigation.

10-16 Puppy Doe Update Photo rest in peacePlease be assured that these three agencies are working in concert to identify and hold accountable the person or persons responsible for the torture of Puppy Doe. It is highly unlikely that this level of sadistic cruelty could be shown to one animal and not be part of a pattern involving other animals or perhaps vulnerable people.

Anyone with information material to the criminal investigation regarding Puppy Doe is encouraged to contact the Animal Rescue League of Boston, Law Enforcement Department at 617-226-5610, email them at cruelty@arlboston.org, or call Quincy Police Detective Thomas Pepdjonovich at 617-745-5774.

We will continue to post updates on the Puppy Doe case as we receive them from the District Attorney.


Animal Art is Here to Stay

Local Artist Gives Lobby Art on Permanent Loan

Mildred, an ARL alum.

Mildred, an ARL alum.

Thanks to South End artist, Paula Ogier, the art in our Boston lobby will be staying up indefinitely!

Paula dropped in at the Animal Rescue League of Boston one day in January 2013, just to take a breather from her work and visit the kitties, and she ended up adopting Tippi. “Tippi was a cautious stray who has blossomed into a playful spirit,” says Paula. “The transformation you make in an animal’s life with the gift of a home is more than matched by the magic they bring as a friend and family member.”

Her artwork was originally displayed at the League as part of Washington Gateway Main Street’s temporary Moving Gallery. The goal of displaying artwork here was to liven up the space and create an instant connection with animals before entering the adoption center. After seeing how her art transformed the lobby and receiving so much positive feedback about her artwork, Paula decided to give the collection on permanent loan to the League.

Thank you, Paula for brightening up our lobby and warming the hearts of our visitors, before they even step foot into our adoption center.

Paula paints pet portraits, and also creates art for use on products. View her art or schedule your pet portrait session.


Dog Bite Prevention: Advice and Signs to Look for in Dogs

May 19-25th marks National Dog Bite Prevention Week, a week designed to help educate the public about the nearly 5 million dog bites that happen every year.

A few facts from the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA):

    • 800,000 Americans seek medical attention for dog bites every year
    • Of those, about half are children
    • The age most at risk are children age 5-9
    • Senior citizens are the second most commonly affected group

We interviewed Dr. Amy Marder, VMD, CAAB, Director of the Center for Shelter Dogs at the Animal Rescue League of Boston to get some advice on dog bite prevention.

Q: According to the American Veterinary Medical Association, more than 4.7 million dog bites occur annually, with approximately 60 percent of the victims being children. What tips can you give to help us educate our children about the prevention of dog bites?

A: Most dog bites are not reported, but statistics of the ones that are reported show that children, especially little boys, are the most common victims. Most dogs do not bite! But if they need to protect themselves or their property from what they think is dangerous, they may. It’s important that children learn about dog behavior and how to interact appropriately with a dog so that bites can be avoided. Some of those tips are as follows:

  1.  Never approach or reach for an unfamiliar dog with no owner present, especially if the dog is tied, behind a fence or in a car.  If an owner is present, always ask if the dog likes children.
  2. Never bother dogs when they are eating, chewing a toy, sleeping or caring for puppies.  Just think about how you feel when your brother or sister takes your food or toys away or wakes you up in the middle of a sleep.

Q: What is the most appropriate way to greet a dog?

A: Always let a dog, even one you know sniff you before you pet.  Watch the dog to see if he likes you for a few seconds before you pet.  If the dog wags his tail and stays with you, then it’s OK to pet, but do so under the dog’s chin instead of on his head.  If the dog backs away, he probably doesn’t want you to pet him, so don’t pet.

Q: What should you do when a strange dog approaches you?

A: If a dog is alone, stand perfectly still, do not pet.  Allow the dog to sniff and wait for him to go away.   Do not start running, as the dog will probably chase.  If the dog is with an owner, ask the owner if the dog likes children (then do as above).  

Q:What advice do you have for behaving around unfamiliar dogs? 

A: Unless there is an owner with the dog, I would ignore them.

Q: What are warning signs to look for in a dog who may bite?

A: Look at what the dog is saying to you.  Dogs use sounds and body language to communicate how they feel.  Just like us!  If you hear a dog growl, or show his teeth, don’t proceed.  If you see a dog stiffen his body, tuck his tail, move away from you, yawn, lick his lips, or stare at you, don’t proceed!  Additionally, if a dog shows signs of being fearful you should not proceed.

Q: Do you have any additional tips for preventing dog bites? 

A: Not all dogs behave in the same ways. Every dog is different. Just because your dog enjoys the things that you do, it doesn’t mean that all dogs will. If you follow these guidelines, chances are dogs will like you and you won’t get bitten.


Kitten Season is in Full Swing

The warmer weather brings one of the more hectic times of year for the Animal Rescue League of Boston (ARL) … kitten season.

Every year, we experience an influx of kittens starting in the months of March and April. Most kittens that come into ARL’s Animal Care & Adoption Centers are in need of foster care before they are able to be adopted. ARL foster parents volunteer their time and resources — Over a period of 8 weeks, a foster parent cares for a litter of kittens providing their basic needs as well as a human-animal bond.

Kitten season will continue until the fall when the colder weather comes back. Until then, ARL will continue to care for each furry bundle that comes into our care.

The help provided by foster parents is invaluable to us, not only for kittens but all animals in need of foster care. Click here to learn more about becoming a foster parent or volunteering at ARL.