For people who absolutely love animals, it’s tragic to hear about cases of animal cruelty. A great deal of research, education and intervention has been at the forefront of preventing neglect and abuse, but there is still much to be done.

April is Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Month, and to aid in the fight we’ve got some tips on how to spot – and stop – animal cruelty. 

Animal Welfare Counts

As a responsible citizen, you may feel absolutely compelled to get involved when you witness signs of animal cruelty. However, you should never compromise your own safety in this virtuous fight.

There is a well known link between other criminal violence and animal cruelty, and it’s paramount not to personally step over a line in order to save an animal (or animals) in need.

What Can You Do?

Reporting signs of animal cruelty is a duty of a responsible community. To help protect abused and neglected animals (and make your town a better place to live), we recommend that you act quickly and call any of the following:

Furthermore, consult Indiana code for additional information pertaining to general provisions and definitions.

Obvious Versus Subtle Signs

While some signs of animal cruelty are obvious to the naked eye, others are not so cut and dry. Sometimes it’s not always clear whether or not an animal is being treated the right way. Consequently, we offer the following signs that leave little doubt:

  • An animal that is left alone outside without adequate shelter from extreme cold or heat, absence of fresh water. Are they chained up or contained in close contact with many other animals?
  • Obvious malnourishment, visible ribs, shaky walk, weakness
  • Open sores
  • Visible parasites, such as fleas, and/or untreated skin conditions like dirty coat, mats, scaly skin, etc. 
  • Animals left alone in a closed vehicle in warm weather
  • Untreated medical conditions, such as diabetes or thyroid issues
  • Animals left behind in an abandoned house
  • Unsocialized pets, those that receive neither exercise nor attention
  • Pets that are forced outside with piled up waste
  • Foul odors

Raise Awareness of Animal Cruelty

If you notice any of these signs, or a combination of them, we encourage you to take action. At New Haven Pet Hospital, our veterinarians and staff members are always available to help animals that cannot help themselves. To help save a life, please contact us with any questions or concerns.