If you spent time on any of the major social media sites yesterday, chances are you saw the animal abuse video from St. Louis circulating. The graphic video featured a young teenager slamming a dog to the ground and punching the dog while another teen laughed and recorded the abuse.
By the time it was finally taken down from Facebook, the video had been shared more than 10,000 times throughout the day. The APA was one of many local agencies flooded with calls from across the country asking how to help the animal.
It’s times like these we recognize and appreciate the power of our community’s voices. Within an hour of the video going viral, Saint Louis County Police along with Animal Care & Control took the dog from the home and into their care, and the two boys involved were arrested later that afternoon. The dog, now named Honor, underwent thorough medical evaluations, was found to have no broken bones or internal health problems and is doing very well at the shelter.
The APA sends out a big “thank you” to the officers involved in the rescue and to those who alerted authorities about the abuse. We know Honor is in caring hands now and will find the wonderful, loving home she deserves.
We also hope the boys who perpetrated this crime receive not only punishment but the counseling and education they need to recognize their behavior as brutal, cruel and indefensible. Animal abuse is a heinous and common crime in our culture, and incidents such as these reinforce the need for humane education classes for all students. Animal abuse is not always simply deliberate acts of cruelty. Often it involves young people acting out of ignorance of appropriate behavior toward living creatures. Respect for people and other animals must be taught from an early age in order for our communities to avert reprehensible behavior such as this from our members, both young and old. Perhaps then the power of our community’s voices will be heard praising the kind acts of our neighbors instead of reacting in disgust from their shameful behavior.