Wednesday, May 22, 2024

April is Animal Cruelty Prevention Month, My County Link talks to Darke County experts

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GREENVILLE—Every 60 seconds, an animal suffers from animal cruelty in the United States.

Animal cruelty is the crime of inflicting physical pain, suffering or death on an animal beyond necessity for normal discipline.

The month of April is dedicated to the prevention of animal cruelty.

Around 10 million animals die from abuse every year in the U.S. With 60% being dogs, and 18% cats.

Darke County Dog Warden Bob Bair said one of the key points of animal cruelty prevention is to report any known abuse.

“The main thing is if you see something, say something to somebody,” he said.

Other than reporting abuse, Bair added that it’s important to be a responsible pet owner yourself.

“Set an example of kindness to abused animals that have been abused in the past,” he said. “If you get them from a shelter or wherever, let them know, not everybody is bad, or even be an example for younger people.”

Lori Dorn, Director of the Darke County Humane Society, added that education is essential to preventing animal cruelty.

“You can’t get too much education,” she said. “We had a couple instances last year with kittens that involved children. Kids have to understand, it’s not just an animal. They have feelings, they have a heart. They love you more than they love themselves.”

Bair echoed her sentiment, and said it’s important to teach kids to respect animals.

“That’s a big one that we see so much of in this industry,” he said. “Children are not taught how to behave around a dog. Respect animals, when a dog is eating, stay out of his food bowl. Teach children how to act around a dog, even a stray dog, or your own dog. Teach them how to act.”

The orange ribbon is known as the “animal guardian ribbon” and has come to symbolize awareness for animal cruelty prevention. Go orange for animals!

Lastly, Bair said it’s important to offer assistance if you can, whether it’s monetary, food or housing.

“There are times maybe they didn’t mean to neglect their dog,” he said. “They might have lost their job, and it came down to buying food for the kids, or buying food for the dog.”

If you witness animal abuse or neglect, report it immediately. Call the Darke County Animal Shelter at 937-547-1645, the Darke County Humane Society at 937-548-1009, or the Darke County Sheriff’s Office at 937-548-2020.