Small Town Epidemic:Animals Abandoned and Left To Die
A Story Of Abandonment
Blandford, Massachusetts is a small town nestled in the Springfield Metropolitan Statistics area of Massachusetts. The population in the 2010 census lists Blandford as home to 1214 residents. This weekend Blandford is making the local news for a horrible case of animal abandonment.
This is an article on animal abandonment. It's the small town epidemic where owners are abandoning animals. Leaving them to die with no food and no water and no shelter. It's happening everywhere.
Please take a look at the video found at this link presented as a Only on 3 investigative news report by Chris Stewart out of Springfield. For the squeemish, there are no "blood and guts" scenes. It's just very very sad. The video shows two dogs running around in the rain on chains. It also shows the farm animals looking abandoned and alone. http://www.cbs3springfield.com/news/local/Only-on-3-Animal-Abuse-in-Blandford-104179212.html.
The farm (livestock) animals are shown alongside some fungus covered hay the home owners had left for food. The dogs had no food and the drinking water is in a rusted barrel. I doubt if that was available except after a good rain. All of these animals were left to die by starvation and dehydration.
This story hasn't made the national news at this time. It may never make national news. But this kind of abuse is happening all over this country. Much of it is going on in very small towns right under our noses. I've written this article to make everyone aware that no town is immune to animal cruelty.
Neighbor Frank Verderber reported the situation a few days ago. Apparently this isn't the first time the owner has been in trouble for abandoning the animals on his property. In 2007 neighbors presented a list of problems on the property dating back two years to the local government. Some of the animals back then even managed to free themselves and made it to busy Route 23. I don't even want to know their fate when facing a busy highway.
Take a look at those loving dogs and how they respond to a strangers
(Frank Verderber's) affection. They don't deserve any of this.
This is not the way to care for our animals. It's also not the way to put an end to the problem once it's been reported. I don't think I'm alone in my thinking this second case of animal cruelty should never have happened.
The property hasn't been lived on for months. These animals depended on their owners for food, water and shelter and have been left to starve to death. Something needs to be done about it this weekend. I feel the neighbors will do all they can for the animals this weekend. Especially since no one in their local government has done much to help in the past.
Too many animals are needlessly dying by falling through the cracks in
our legal system while state laws strengthening animal cruelty are sitting on
the desks of our legislators.
Massachusetts law describes animal cruelty as follows:
It is unlawful for an owner or custodian of an animal:
To fail to provide an animal with:
* Proper food and water
* Shelter or protection from the weather
* Veterinary attention needed to reduce or end suffering from disease or injury
* A sanitary environment
* To willfully abandon an animal
To carry or cause an animal to be carried in or on a vehicle in a manner that endangers the animal including transport of an improperly secured animal
To willfully permit an animal to be subjected to unnecessary torture, suffering or cruelty
To Subject, Cause or Procure an animal:
* To be tortured or tormented
* To be cruelly killed, beaten or mutilated
To fail to notify the owner or police after striking a dog or cat with a motor vehicle
To use animals as lure or bail in a cruel or inhuman manner
To transport an animal in the back of a motor vehicle unless animal is properly restrained
In November, 2004, animal cruelty, as defined in Massachusetts General Laws, Chapter 272, Section 77, became a felony. Until November 17th, animal cruelty had been considered a misdemeanor. Now, violations of this law may result in a sentence of up to 5 years in state prison, or up to 2.5 years in a county jail and/or a fine of up to $2,500.
Everyone who loves animals should always keep their eyes and ears open and be prepared to step in and report animal abuse. I would even go so far as to feed and water an animal until authorities take over. One of these days I may be arrested for doing this, as it would be considered trespassing, but I don't care. I'm not going to allow an animal to suffer while bureaucratic red tape holds up a rescue.
I ask my readers to please pass this article on to friends. No area is immune to this behavior by people who call themselves human. We all need to keep an eye out for similar cases since there are many out there who don't love and care for animals in a humane way.
I will keep up with this story as it unfolds and post updates. I only hope the owners who abandoned them are charged with everything the law can throw at them.
Elisa Black-Taylor is a regular contributor to www.pictures-of-cats.org
For an unrelated hub on animal abandonment please see Yolo County Trash Bin Dog Euthanized