opinion from SunHerald.com
I would like to share a few thoughts about animal cruelty from the
Humane Society of the United States. From cats to canaries, from
Dobermans to dachshunds, our pets often seem to know how we feel.
They comfort us when we hurt and make us happy when we are sad. They
share our joy and stay by our sides when times are bad, but sometimes
people are mean to animals. How do we explain this?
Mahatma Gandhi said, "The greatness of a nation, and its moral
progress, can be judged by the way its animals are treated."
Animals feel pain and fear like we do, but they are often helpless
victims, because they cannot say what happened to them. In fact, some
people choose to abuse animals instead of people for this very reason.
If we wish to create a humane society, we must stop cruelty against
those who are most vulnerable - our animals.
Animal cruelty encompasses a range of behaviors harmful to animals,
from neglect to malicious killing. Most cruelty investigated by humane
officers is unintentional neglect that can be resolved through
education. Intentional cruelty or abuse is knowingly depriving an
animal of food, water, shelter or veterinary care, or maliciously
torturing, maiming, mutilating or killing an animal. All animal
cruelty is a concern because it is wrong to inflict suffering on any
Remember that all of our furry friends are a part of God's creation.
Let's give them the love and respect they deserve.
Dr. Don Palermo is a veterinarian at Bienville Animal Medical Center
in Ocean Springs. Questions for this column are encouraged. Write to
South Mississippi Veterinary Medical Association, 20005 Pineville
Road, Long Beach MS 39560 and include a self-addressed stamped