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Get tough on animal abusers


RUTH RUVHALL

Get tough on animal abusers

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RECENTLY in Barbados, a lady awoke to find a little dog lying in a pool of blood on her doorstep.

The poor thing had been viciously chopped about the head with a cutlass and an eye had been detached from one of its sockets.

In a panic she rang the nearest police station as she realised that under the animal cruelty laws of Barbados, a crime had indeed been committed and she needed help as the suspect was thought to be nearby.

The following response by the police (located a mere three minutes away from the scene) completely boggles my mind.

They gave her a (disconnected) number for the Animal Control Unit (whose job it is to collect strays and not animals in need of medical attention) and that was the end of it.

She sought help elsewhere and was appropriately guided to contact the RSPCA’s animal welfare inspector who promptly arrived to whisk the dying animal away for emergency treatment.

How in this day and age as Barbados still aches for First World status can its police force continue to ignore acts of cruelty towards animals? Should I chance upon a victim of a crime, what would happen then?

Would they “assist” by giving me the number to the Queen Elizabeth Hospital and send me merrily on my way?

I am still outraged, that in 2006, the schoolboy who thought it good sport to stone a pelican to death has still not been identified and treated accordingly, although every Tom, Dick and Harry had sight of him in school uniform pummelling that bird!

In 2007, then Member of Parliament Reginald Farley, was plastered on the front page of this newspaper and was quoted as saying (he) “was surprised at the number of Barbadians who were unkind to animals” and called for a “strengthening of the Animal Cruelty Laws”.

And yet, still, as we speak, the animal shelters here are still bursting at the seams with abused dogs with next to nothing for resources to care for them!

I say that when Barbadians are hauled before the courts for acts of cruelty to animals, fined and imprisoned to the maximum, perhaps then the lot of them might think twice about taking a cutlass to a helpless dog!

Will the Barbados Government ever take this issue as seriously as it should?

RUTH RUVHALL

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