The stats surrounding animal abuse are shocking and disappointing.
According to PETA, 10 million animals in America are abused to the point of death every year. These include dogs, fish, cats, monkeys, pigs, hamsters, rabbits, rats, frogs, and birds.
Some are killed in laboratories during research in medical and biological institutions.
Others go through horrific deaths including exposure to toxic fumes, having their skins burned, crushing of their spinal cords, drilling holes into their skills, and food deprivation.
Animals deserve love, top-notch care, and attention for all they do for us. Unfortunately, they sometimes get the opposite.
Many of them meet their deaths too soon and in gruesome fashions. The lucky ones live in pain, agony, and anxiety.
Since they don’t have voices of their own, abused animals rely on well-wishers to get them out of their misery.
If you love animals, you would report the slightest hint of abuse to the relevant authorities.
Thankfully, we have enough of those in the United States. How do you do that if you wish to remain anonymous?
What Is Abuse?
Before you report any form of cruelty, you must know what warrants abuse and what doesn’t.
The Humane Society groups abuse into the following categories:
A. Direct Abuse
This is the intentional act of physically inflicting pain on an animal.
And includes beating the animal, kicking it anyhow, and using other forms of physical attacks.
Besides intentionally hurting an animal, other forms of abuse include depriving the animal of basic needs – food, water, shelter, medical care, and a clean environment.
Taking in too many animals that you can’t accord care for is also part of neglect as is failure to remove harmful substances (broken glass, feces, and any sharp objects) where the animal sleeps.
Both forms of animal abuse are felonies in all 50 US states. Some take the crime seriously while others are a tad lenient.
Some forms of abuse are considered major felonies than others. For more about animal cruelty laws, refer to this article.
How to Report Animal Abuse Anonymously
Inflicting harm upon animals is a crime that is mostly addressed by local and state police.
Law enforcement officers are tasked with the responsibility of investigating animal cruelty complaints, fights involving animals, and other crimes related to animals.
Other states have also given this authority to animal control officers, agents of humane societies, and peace officers.
They can investigate animal abuse complaints, issue warrants, and where necessary, arrest suspects.
Reporting animal abuse is not an easy thing. If you are not careful, you can get in trouble with your neighbors or members of your community.
When reported to the authorities, some people can retaliate in unkind ways. Plus, after talking to the authorities, you will be required to take pictures and photos of the abused animals, give the contact information of the first-hand persons with the information about the situation, etc.
This doesn’t sit well with most people. To avoid all that, they’d rather stay anonymous throughout the entire process.
As the BSCPCA claims, you can report animal abuse anonymously.
The first step is to make a call to the humane society’s call operators. During the call, be sure to state that you want your identity concealed. That way, the operators will not ask for your personal information as they often do.
However, you might want to consider giving your contact information as it might come in handy later on.
The BSPCA promises to keep it private unless a court order or search warrant is necessary. See, the authorities will require a statement if things go to court.
Additionally, the authorities can use your contact for follow-up. If the animal control officers need answers to additional questions, they can contact you.
Plus, if you want updates on the progress of the investigation, your contact is important.
Similarly, the Animal Welfare Institute (AWI) says you can make an animal cruelty report anonymously.
If you wish to stay under the radar, that’s fine. The most important thing to do is to report the matter and hopefully save the animal from further harm.
Nevertheless, like the BSPCA, the AWI claims that the outcome of the case depends on the information you are willing to give to the authorities.
The reason is that animal control and law enforcement officers are swamped. They are often understaffed and work with limited resources.
When deciding on which cases to pursue, they often go for the ones with enough information about the reporter.
The reason is simple – it is easy to follow up a case with the contact information of the reporter.
Giving your information is a way of showing your willingness to help with the case beyond just reporting it.
The Process of Staying Anonymous
To report a case anonymously, follow the following procedure:
1. Prepare Your Evidence
First things first, get your facts right before you pick up the phone to call the animal office or the police.
If you want to be credible, you need to provide a strong report with as much data as possible.
For one, get a concise and factual statement showing the dates and times when you witnessed abuse.
If you can get photos and videos without trespassing, go ahead and do so. Snap the abused animals, location, and the surrounding areas.
Have these things in printed forms and keep your own copies.
2. Make The Call
Once you have gathered your evidence, the next thing to do would be to report abuse.
For New York residents, the right number to call is 311 for both neglect and abuse. However, if you are reporting a crime in progress, dial 911.
If you live in another state, call 911 as well to report a crime in progress or the agency tasked with the job of protecting animals from abuse.
This can be the local humane society, animal control, SPCA, or local police. If you cannot determine who to call, call the local police to find out.
As you make the call, be sure to say that you are an anonymous caller. You want to do this earlier on to avoid questions about your identity.
However, if you have the contact information of someone with first-hand information on the case, give it up.
The witnesses should be willing to back the report up and if possible, testify in court.
3. Keep A Record Of The Report
To be able to stay updated on the abuse case, it is a good idea to keep your own record of the report.
Write down the contact and name of the person you spoke to, a summary of what you spoke about with the animal control officer, and copies of the documents you gave out.
After the agreed length of time elapses, you can call the officer and ask about the progress of the case.
Animals play widespread roles in society. These range from offering undying affection as pets, helping in law enforcement, tracking missing persons, and providing critical assistance as service animals, just to mention a few.
Sadly, they fall victims to abuse in the hands of the very people they are helping.
If you come across any cruelty in your community or anywhere else for that matter, don’t be afraid to report it even if you stay anonymous.
You may just save one animal from being subjected to pain.
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Sable McNeil is a canine chef, professional pet blogger, and proud owner of two male dogs. I have been an animal lover all my life, with dogs holding a special place in my heart. Initially, I created this blog to share recipes, tips, and any relevant information on healthy homemade dog treats. But because of my unrelenting passion to make a difference in the world of dogs, I have expanded the blog’s scope to include the best information and recommendations about everything dog lovers need to know about their canine friends’ health and wellbeing. My mission now is to find the most helpful content on anything related to dogs and share it with fellow hardworking hound lovers. While everything I share is in line with the latest evidence-based veterinarian health guidelines, nothing should be construed as veterinary advice. Please contact your vet in all matters regarding your Fido’s health.