Appeal after starved dog‘s body dumped

Published Date:
10 January 2011
AN investigation has been launched after a dog that had been starved to death was dumped in an Edinburgh garden.

• The dog had suffered years of neglect

Animal cruelty inspectors were horrified when they discovered the Staffordshire bull terrier‘s corpse behind a hedge in Saughton on Saturday.

It is thought the body was dumped there by the animal’s owner.

The Scottish SPCA said it was one of the worst cases of cruelty ever seen in Edinburgh, with the dog weighing just over 8kg – half what it should be.

The charity’s chief inspector Paul Anderson said: “This case is horrendous and among the worst we have investigated in recent years.

“We haven’t carried out a post-mortem yet but the immediate indications are this poor dog starved to death and hadn’t been dead long.

“He had very little muscle left on his body and was so emaciated it’s as though skin had been pulled over his bones.”

They suspect the animal, discovered in a garden on Whitson Road, had been kept in “squalid” conditions prior to its death.

Charity chiefs want to catch the culprits, thought to have disposed of the dog some time on Friday night or early Saturday morning, who could face a prison sentence.

SSPCA staff were so disturbed by the crime that they released images of the dead animal on its website to shock people into helping the inquiry.

Estimates place the dog at around ten years old, prompting fears that he has endured almost a decade of suffering.

Mr Anderson added: “Sadly, he’ll have been in a great deal of pain as when his body starves to death its organs begin to fail.

“The dog also had pressure sores and smelled of urine, which suggests he had been kept in squalid conditions.

“The dog was found in a garden next to some bushes and, as there are no gaps big enough for him to have crawled through, it seems likely he was thrown over the fence when he was either dead or dying.

“We are asking the public for help identifying who is responsible for causing him such terrible suffering.”

Anyone with information is being asked to call the SSPCA on 03000-999 999.

To view the original article CLICK HERE

Childhood Animal Cruelty and Link to Violence Toward Humans

Dec 2, 2010 Antonietta Salerno

There is growing evidence to suggest that childhood animal cruelty has the potential of ‘upgrading’ to violence towards humans at a later stage.
Brasher & Maddy - Antonietta Salerno

Brasher & Maddy – Antonietta Salerno

There is growing evidence linking the abuse of animals with violence against human beings, with researchers, animal welfare organisations, the FBI and other protection agencies linking animal cruelty to domestic violence, child abuse, murder, and serial killings.
Wilson and Norris (2003:4) state that “The abuse of animals is a juvenile behaviour that has more than a causal link with serious violent activities in adults. In the past decade in particular, there has been increased research activity to examine this recurring phenomenon”.
The Cat Protection Society of NSW (2008) provides an example of Morris, a male cat who had been surrendered to the Society as a stray: a group of boys were teaching their dog to attack him. As a result, Morris only feels comfortable to eat if someone sits with him and makes him feel safe while doing so.

Why do children/adults harm animals?

People who commit violence towards animals are predominantly adolescent males who come from a range of ethnic, socio-economic and cultural backgrounds (Stoner, 2000).
Most professionals agree that animal abuse is not just the result of an evil personality (however this may be the case for some individuals!), but a symptom of deep family/psychological problems:

  • Individuals may live in a violent environment (either subjected to violence or a witness to violence towards a parent or other family member). As a result, they may release their frustrations out on the more vulnerable members of the family, such as companion animals;
  • it is estimated that one third of children exposed to domestic violence will act out their anger, often against their own pets;
  • by releasing this frustration and anger out on animals, this provides them with a sense of control; they are in charge of the situation.

Mass murderers with a history of violence against animals

Stoner (2000:28) notes that “There is a gruesome litany of case histories of killers, rapists, batterers and child abusers who ‘practiced’ on animals when they were children”. The following people have been documented as having had a history of animal abuse prior to moving on to murdering humans:
The following details are provided by Shelburne (2010) of well-known murderers who have been documented as having a history of animal abuse prior to moving on to human victims:

  • Jeffrey Dahmer: mass-murderer and cannibal, who killed neighbors’ pets and impaled a dog’s head on a stick;
  • Patrick Sherril: murdered 14 co-workers and then killed himself, stole pets, then tied them up and allowed his own dog to mutilate them.
  • David Berkowitz (aka Son of Sam): shot his neighbor’s Labrador retriever;
  • Albert DeSalvo (aka The Boston Strangler): shot arrows into boxes of trapped cats and dogs;
  • Brenda Spencer: fired 40 shots into a crowd of children, murdering 2 and wounding 9, had a history of setting the tails of neighborhood cats and dogs on fire;
  • Edmund Emil Kemper III: who murdered his mother and 7 other women, used to abuse cats and dogs;
  • Carol Edmund Cole: murdered 35 people, admitted that his first violent act was strangling a puppy;
  • Richard Allen Davis: kidnapper and murderer, doused cats with gasoline and set them on fire.

In Australia, the following individuals began their violent and murdering ways by abusing and killing animals:

  • Paul Denyer (known as the Frankston Serial Killer in Victoria), began his murderous ways at a young age: he dissected his sister’s teddy bears with a homemade knife, and when he was 10, stabbed the family kitten and hung it from a tree in the backyard. Later on, while working at what would be his last place of employment, he allegedly slaughtered and dismembered two goats in a paddock (Kidd, 2010). He also disemboweled a neighbour’s cat and cut the throats of its kittens, and wrote on the walls with the cat’s blood (Wilson & Norris, 2003)
  • Archibald Beattie McCafferty, the Sydney “Kill Seven” murderer, strangled chickens, dogs and cats apparently to see what it was like (Kidd, 1998).
  • Martin Bryant, (mass murder of 35 people in the Tasmanian town of Port Arthur), abused and tortured animals.

Violence against animals affects many people: the animal involved, the family members of the animal, the family of the abuser, and any potential future victims (whether they be humans or non-humans). Therefore, any knowledge or suspicion of animal abuse should be treated seriously and reported to an animal welfare protection agency or the police.
At present, the laws in Australia (as for many other countries) are not very strict when it comes to animal abuse, with those found to be in violation of animal welfare laws being let off with a fine or a ban towards animal ‘ownership’.
It appears that the RSPCA in Australia are in a difficult position; while their role is to assist in the prevention of animal cruelty, along with possible criminal convictions against perpetrators, the Courts often rule against the RSPCA, deeming insufficient evidence.

Read more at Suite101: Childhood Animal Cruelty and Link to Violence Toward Humans http://www.suite101.com/content/childhood-animal-cruelty-linked-to-violence-toward-humans-a313159#ixzz1Aor0g0YZ

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