It doesn't make sense

Just before Christmas, I called Animal Control in my town. Two teens were abusing a kitten in front of my home. They were punching and kicking it, and loudly laughing and bragging about how it screeched and whimpered when they did. I banged on my screen door, and let them know they were seen, and called out that animal abuse is a crime. They responded with claims that they hadn’t done anything, though I saw them with my own eyes.

Upon discovering there were several kittens out there wandering around, my sons and I made a call to Animal Control, wanting them to come out and collect them. Animal Control informed me that this wasn’t their job. Apparently, collecting stray and/or abused animals was not their job…that day.

I say “that day” because yesterday, they did come out. When two of my neighbors called about some cats that were locked in an abandoned home two doors down from me, Animal Control did come out and get involved.

Now, don’t get me wrong. I’m happy that these cats were removed from what was obviously a bad environment for them. They should not have had to live that way, and I’m glad they no longer do.

But what about the stray kittens? What about the kittens that aren’t old enough, wary enough, yet to avoid those who would do them harm? What about the kitten that, later that day when I called, was run over by a car? A car driven by someone who made no attempt at stopping? I had to explain that situation to my children – and try to explain that we shouldn’t blame Animal Control for the cat being run over, even though I tend to agree with my kids. If Animal Control had come out that day, they would have collected those kittens and the one that was killed by a car would still be alive, and likely living in a warm and loving home right now.

What bothers me most about this whole situation, though, is something that the woman I spoke with that day said. When I tried to impress upon her the fact that I’d seen the kitten being tormented, she replied with, “I’m sure it’ll be fine. All kids do that at some point.”

My kids have never done that. I never did that. No one I know ever did that. The only people I have ever heard of who abused or killed animals? Serial killers. People who have no respect for any life at all, animal or human. And the fact that this woman so casually brushed it off really irritated me.

People need to stop brushing off things like animal abuse, stealing, threatening to beat someone up or kill them when you don’t get what you want. These things are not acceptable behavior, nor are they normal. If your kid is doing stuff like this, you need to put a stop to it. You need to explain why it’s wrong, and if necessary, discipline them. But you can’t ignore it. If you ignore it, it’ll grow. And your kid will grow up to be one of the people we see on the news, who’s going to jail for the umpteenth time because he robbed, sold drugs, killed – or who knows what else.

And if anyone can explain to me how Animal Control decides which animals are worth coming out to rescue and which ones aren’t, I’d really love to hear it. Because I just don’t get it.