In January, the NYPD took over responsibility for animal cruelty cases from the ASPCA, allowing the latter to focus more on direct care and less on enforcement. This reorgonzation has led to a “record breaking” number of rescues and prosecutions against sadistic assholes. Additionally, the new police unit has been investigating the link between animal abuse and domestic violence. A study published this year and the NYPD’s ongoing observations confirm this connection.
“We do see a correlation between animal cruelty and domestic violence,” said Sgt. Barbara Thomas, commanding officer of the new Animal Cruelty Investigation Squad.
“Animal cruelty can be an indicator that there is something more going on in the house, such as spouse or child abuse or elder abuse.”
The numbers are astonishing: 71% of pet owners who take shelter in domestic violence centers across the country “report that their abuser had threatened, injured or killed family pets.” Domestic violence shelters report that many victims will even stay with their abusers for longer over fears of what would happen to their pets if they leave.