Cruelty to animals must end

| 19/02/2009

Animal cruelty is a disgraceful occurrence that is widespread throughout Grand Cayman. It is a state of affairs that should not be tolerated by the public.

One of the many reasons that make this issue disturbing is that many times it is youths doing the damage or adults treating animals brutally in front of young children. What kind of morals are these children being taught? What kinds of adults will this produce for Cayman society? The way an animal is treated surely reflects the type of person one is, and if they will pick on a young, defenceless animal, what is to stop them from moving on to greater crimes, as what sort of conscience must they have to be able to do that?

I also do not think that most people on the island know that cruelty to animals is an offence under clause 70 of theAnimals Law (Revised) liable on summary conviction to a fine of $4,000 and to imprisonment for one year. If you see animal abuse going on, don’t hesitate to call the police. Anyone can help save an animal from further torment with just one call. If you don’t want to call the police, call the Humane Society at 949-1461.

Most of these poor animals are being bred by irresponsible owners or, despite free spay and neuter, not being brought into the Humane Society for the procedure and have puppies which are then left to die chained up to a tree, get abused and become emaciated.

In the tropics many diseases are present, some which are zoonotic (transferable between animals and humans), and too many people are letting dogs become sick and not bringing them in for treatment and/or leaving them to die where parasites find the soil to thrive in and find new hosts. The Humane Society and others on the island are even willing to foster and take these animals under their care to give them a better chance in life.

We are obligated to do something as it is people that brought these animals to the island and made this a problem. We are the reason these animals suffer.

There are many issues in Grand Cayman, but this is also an important one as the reputation of the island also depends on it. Mahatma Gandhi said, "A society is judged by how it treats its most vulnerable…The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way its animals are treated. I hold that, the more helpless a creature, the more entitled it is to protection by man from the cruelty of man."

I myself have lived in many places in the world and must say Cayman is on the top of the list for "in your face" cruelty to animals.

In such a small island where so many people can be reached thereis no excuse not to educate the public, to let them know that it is an offence to abuse and neglect animals, to let them know there are people who care enough to do something about it and help, and that it is unacceptable to witness and allow anyone to indulge in such morally repugnant behaviour.

To express the extent of the cruelty I feel it’s best to give some examples.

The first is Sarge (left), who was found flea infested, dying of dehydration, starvation (weighing 17lbs) and heartworm on the side of South Sound Road with his companion and puppies who had been thrown out by their owner, an elderly woman. He had been tied to a tree his entire life and cannot walk properly as a result. Someone kindly took him in, at which time he was only given a few weeks to live and it has now been over a year. (Below: Sarge now at 60lbs)

Another dog was tied to a tree so tightly that the rope cut into his flesh. When he was found his bone was exposed and so badly infected his leg had to be amputated.

An old, deaf and almost blind dame, Ruby, was found on the side of the road, thrown out for a younger dog. She had been hit by a car that left her to die, and despite love and care from a foster parent, eventually died from brain haemorrhaging, which was the result of a tumour that formed as a consequence from being hit by the car.

A dog had acid thrown in his face…for fun! Some kids thought it was amusing to see such suffering. By the time the dog got to the vets, the acid was turning his bones into mush and he had to be put down. I won’t post a picture of this as it is too graphic…but I am sure you can imagine the suffering and pain he felt.

A mother and her puppies were found after being thrown in gasoline and bleach as treatment for mange. The mother had scars all over her face from having stones thrown at her by children, who she has been terrified of since. This is one of the puppies before  treatment —

– and right after treatment.

 The most recent story is that of a 2.5 month old puppy, Lucky (pictured up top), that was being tormented and abused by a group of young children, someone rescued him and he will now be fostered by a volunteer and treated for an infection he had been suffering from whilst being abused by these kids. The kids managed to fracture his skull!

All these animals went on to foster homes and all of them, despite the pain and suffering people had put them through, still put their trust in other human beings and remained or remain loyal companions. That is more than we can say about most people.

Please help prevent animal cruelty, get your animals spayed and neutered and if you cannot commit to making an animal happy, then don’t get one. And if you do have one now and cannot take care of it, at least make the effort to find it another home that can, or drop it off to the Humane Society on 153 North Sound Road, George Town. You can also call them at 949-1461 and someone will pick it up. If you have lost a dog please check www.smustudents.org.
 

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Comments (34)

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  1. Alison Corbett says:

    I commend Khatidja for writing this article and shedding light on animal abuse.  I would also like to highlight that animal abuse is not just isolated to domestic animals, our wildlife is also suffering.  We need to adopt a zero tolerance attitude on all abuse in our community and stamp out violence.  I strongly encourage the public to speak out and report cases to Animal Welfare.   Please remember that local animal charities are not enforcement, we are reliant on Animal Welfare to ensure these cases are pursued and criminals are brought to justice.   

    • CARE says:

      Dear “New to Cayman”

      CARE is a group of dedicated animal lovers who are willing to meet and work alongside and other groups (whether in Cayman or overseas) with a common goal to help save animals here in the Cayman Islands. 
       
      We feel strongly about education and the promotion of spay and neuter as this is where we feel the problem lies.  Too many puppies and kittens are being born on island and there simply aren’t enough homes for them all. 
       
      If you or anyone wants to know more about our goals and objectives and more importantly, to help out, please email us at: caymancare@gmail.com
  2. Humane Society Shelter Manager says:

    No animal has ever been turned away, and certainly that will never happen, however people who can afford to pay should pay!

  3. Anonymous says:

    Perhaps the Shelter Manager could clarify what ‘financially assisted’  means precisely?

    Are animals are turned away if their owners are unable to pay?

  4. Anonymous says:

    May I direct you to the ad on ecaytrade.com (ad number 18530) which was posted by Ondine Bult on Nov 20, 2008 on behalf of the Cayman Islands Humane Society which states “Spay or Neuter your pet FOR FREE

  5. Humane Sosiety Shelter Manager says:

    The Cayman Islands Humane Society has performed over 2000 spay and neuter surgeries, and as stated in all of our flyers, this service "is Financially assisted" not free.

    • anonymous says:

      Considering the overpopulation of animals on the island, I would think that making this a free service is more than necessary. Until the Government steps in and makes it a mandatory law or offers more monetary assistance in this regard we really have no choice.  I was also under the belief that the offer of a free mash style clinic to come in from overseas to help alleviate this problem offering the spay and neuter service for free was turned down by the Government.  Surely we should also think about utilising the services of the vet students at St Matthews for these procedures?  The problem is so obvious not only to the people that live on the islands but the increased amount of tourists acknowledging our problems should be more than enough of a reason for Cayman to try and fix this problem once and for all. 

  6. Khatidja McLean says:

    Dear Ron, in response to your comment I would not post an article about animal cruelty unless I was willing to do more than just write about it.  I do appreciate many people do not practice what they preach. I am a volunteer and member of the CIHS, I regularly foster dogs and puppies and find them homes and I dedicate my time and effort in helping neglected and abused animals. In fact I fostered Ray, his mother and his 4 siblings and treated them for mange with the help of other volunteers and then kept the mother for a year and got her through heartworm after which I found her a home. I thought that whilst fostering makes a world of difference, more needs to be done to portray the extent of animal abuse on this island.

    I have lived in many countries, Canada, France, and England being some of them and I stick by my remark that in your face cruelty is on top of the list here. Canada is very strict and has zero tolerance for animal cruelty and is saturated with animal lovers, England has strict animal rights and penalties are enforced and France..well they have barbers and prams for their dogs and the mentality is that dogs are their children. In those countries I could call on an authority and complain and someone would show up within 48 hours and either talk to the owners,  take the animal away from them, or enforce penalties to set an example.  Here there is no such recourse and that makes it hard to fight the battle. I am sure you also read the comment below that some Caymanians feel that they can do as they please with an animal. I completely respect the fact that this pattern of thinking represents a minority but this minority needs to learn somehow that it is unacceptable to treat animals as possessions which can be abused.

    I saw a boy riding a malnutritioned horse this weekend, which was being kept in the backyard of a small residential lot, who was whipping the crap out of the poor horse. This horse was about to kick the boy off onto the cement road on which he could have cracked his head. Not only was his behaviour cruel and unacceptable but  it was dangerous.  In these cases it would be great to be able to call someone with the authority  to take the animal away before anyone gets hurt and allow the animal a better chance in life.

     

    • Ron Moser says:

      Dear Khatidja, thank you very much for your response. I apologise if you thought my response was personal, it was not. You wrote the initial letter, that alone proves you care, I have written a few too and that is exactly the point, not enough people write or act they way they should. Animal cruelty, abuse and care is everyone’s problem, not just yours and mine and of cours it is not. There are a lot of people out there doing what they can in whatever form or way. The sad fact it, no matter how well intended, that there is too much individualism out there. We need a code of ethics which should ensure that we are all on the same page when it comes to all aspects of animal welfare. We have our Humane Society since1971, we now have Ogiers animal care group, another group called CARE and then all the single persons doing what they can but it starts to looks like we’re not communicating very well which could result that we’re all becoming an octopus on roller skates, there is plenty of movement but losing track wether we go forward, backward or sideways. This is also not meant to be a complaint of any kind but we need some serious unity to tackle the problems at hand. The Humane Society is doing ok all things considered but a lot more is needed to fulfill the desire of an animal crime free society. I am appalled that they only have about 250 members for instance, it could and should be more like 25000, if all families become a member, voluntarily or even mandatory if at all possible for a mere CI $ 30.00 per year, we can all rest a lot easier at night knowing that we finally, as a nation have become a very serious part of the solution. The Humane Society has been and should by all means remain being the leader of the pack so to speak. We do not need to add more shelters and slice up the cake even more when it comes to charities, we need to strenghten the one that has been surviving forthe past 28 years and has darn good record to show for it, again, we need unity. We are all doing this for the animals, not for ourselves, there is no room for ego or heroic actions, it must be done together where ever possible. So, let’s open up the communication channels and tackle these problems. If we can all do that, trust me, it will work. The DOA is already on-line with the Humane Society. They have eased up on also keeping strays as long as they can and properly communicate with the Humane Society to together save as many animals as they can.

      In answer to your findings this past week-end with the horse, yes, I fully agree that this should not be tolerated. Unfortunately, the DOA has only one officer and 2 assistants. Maggie Baldino is the only one authorized to seize an animal if cruelty is indeed in your face present. I too hope that one day this will change. Maggie is doing what she can, she educates or lecture may be a better explanation to teach people in general, wherever it occurs that certain things can simply not be tolerated, she needs help too, a lot of it. You could have called her but chances are that she would not be able to come over on the instant, she too can only be in one place at the time. If one cares enough, one can record the day, time, location and nature of offence and pass than on to Maggie so she can take action as soon as possible, a mal-nutritioned horse will not look any better a few days after the sighting, whipmarks will probably still show aswell. Until she gets additional officers and/or assigned special animal constables, I hate to say it but that is the way it is for now.

      On a final note, let’s not worry about our personal differences. I am from Holland, the worlds biggest fanatics when it comes to animal welfare but also in my former homeland, there is lot of abuse there too but not so in your face as it may look over here. I do wonder however when Canada is going to stop killing 250.000+ harp seals each year.

      Love & Peace!

      • Ron Moser says:

        Correction: I noticed I have short changed the Humane Society by 10 years. It was founded in 1971 so that makes it 38 years of operation, not the noted 28. Speed; What a killer!

      • LesleyWalker says:

        Dear Ron

        I cannot speak for the members of the Ogier Animal Welfare Fund but I can speak for CARE. We are always ready and willing to sit down and work with CIHS, indeed we are all members and active volunteers of CIHS. We appreciate all the hard work done by CIHS boards past and present however as you say ‘a lot more is needed’.  Our population and our animal problems have grown hugely since CIHS was established all those years ago and it is no longer possible for a small board to do a fully effective job. New members and volunteers need to be recruited, engaged and empowered.

        CARE is for unity, communication and everyone working together to create both an ‘animal crime free society’ and an island where spay and neuter is the preferred method of controlling animal population. We look forward to sitting down with CIHS and other groups with similar aims to set out a road map for the future

        • Ron Moser says:

          Dear Lesley,

          I could not agree more with your statement, more members, volunteers, all very necessary components to meet success.

          Members besides donations will ensurethat there will be more financial power to meet the demands between all the various needs. Volunteers to walk dogs, help with trapping cats for the special trap & release program etc.

          What the HS does not need is more "empowered" board members that may interfere with an already pretty successful scenario as to how the place should be run, just like any other Company, as that is how it should be run, as a Company, regardless of it’s operating status being a charitable organization. I have my own Company and like to think I know what that means.

          The concept of running a Humane Society from a practical point of view is not that hard once all the required in-house personnel is in place, and I strongly believe they have at this point. As pointed out in my previous letter, the DOA is the only legal body that could actually go after abused animals and confiscate them but they are the ones really understaffed. Until the DOA surrenders their position as far as companion animals is concerned and other parties are legally assigned to do so, there may become room for additional board members to tackle specific duties assuming the HS would be next in line, which would make perfect sense. Stray animals however, anyone can pick up, all people have to do is care a little, a lot would be better of cours, pick it up and drop it of at the HS, unless an animal is hurt, just call them and they will assign the animal to IVS or will deliver it themselves if dropped at the HS.

          I realize you know all the aforementioned but I am utilizingthis medium to emphasize this again to the general populus, just in case somebody missed a piece of information here and there.

          So, the usual bottom line would be that it is indeed imperative that people properly communicate as to who does what and in what capacity but the current HS groundrules work well enough to make it all happen. Anyone who really wants to participate in companion animal welfare but has a problem with the HS as an organization for whatever reason, can either address their concerns in writing to the current board and see what can be done to possibly improve a certain item, or start your own show, but that will however most likely not be in the best interest of the animals as that would mean (unnecessary) competition. The animals right now are competing for their own right to survive, wether they be at the HS or still out in field with no one to care for them, animals do not need people doing the same.

          You may think I am partial to the HS, well in one sense, of cours I am as they care for the hurt, lost and lonely animals in any way they can and I am a needless to say a member/benefactor too and I trust them with all I my heart. As you stated, the CARE group does too. I very much appreciate the CARE group or any other group for that matter that really looks out for the animals. For that exact same reason, I am also a member/benefactor for Cayman Wildlife Rescue, WSPA, HSUS/HSI and PETA but all they need from me is my full support and of cours, my money, and they have it. I trust CARE and others will do the same.

          • Anonymous says:

            My humble & honest opionion is that there are some "empowered" individuals who are so involved with their own trip to be ‘in power’ that  they lose sight of the real idea of actually  saving animals & getting them off the island (let’s face it, we have a population of just over 52 000) which is incredibly important & should be a huge goal to work towards. We do NOT have enough population to adopt every single stray that is brought in & helped. We do NOT have enough volunteers to help all those who need to be put through treatment. . The roll-over isn’t helping either as animals have been left in the shelter by rolled over individuals. I can’t for the life of me understand how such a simple idea is SO HARD to get. Today in the Compass there was a press release of Carolyn Parker receivng over $4,000 in donations from the kickball tournament. Wow, that’s a lot of airtickets off this island to a better forever home for a cat or dog. So many individuals & companies donate so much of their money & time to help these animlas, they should be shown the evidence of these animals going to better lives. We are meant to help animals , not euthanize a healthy animal because we claim there are no resources to help. So really people, WAKE UP & smell the coffee. Look further than your own little ego & pathetic awareness of what  you think is empowerment. . Work together with those who wants to help & donate  time & money & who truly belives in the right of an animal to have a better life! It’s really easy to live in peace and harmony, the sad part is that so few really try & look inside themselves & find the ability to do so. Life is too short to bicker over the small, why not save a life instead & know that you did it with the help of others who have the same passion.

            • Ron Moser says:

              Dear "Anonymous",

              Allow me to enlighten you too. First of all, they way you have written this note is not all that humble but that’s ok, I understand you are upset but that is primarily because you do not understand the way it has to be, not the way we would like it to be.

              I did not write my letters under instruction from anyone so your response is basically pointed to me, fine, no problem.

              You seem to think that whatever donation is brought forward is just to ship animals off these Islands. What kind of dreamworld are you living in? Perhaps you ought to read my letters a few more times.

              Let me explain this too then and not just for you mind you. The HS must be run as a Company, as stated in my previous letter. That means one has to make decisions based on the possiblities the Company has available to them. To pay for: In-house personnel, food, water,medications, veterinary bills, electricity, phone, vehicle(s), insurance, general supplies, general maintenance of the building and if at all possible, shipping out animals of whatever nature, usually puppies, and this has taken place on numerous occasions. There is virtually no need nor request to ship out adult animals, the odd one as it is thought to be a novelty to have a dog from Cayman or to someone that used to live here or like the one I know of, a great dog called "Snowball" that was adopted locally actually by overseas visitors after it was beaten and cut up and nearly died. All hands on deck for cases like that. 

              Anyone who shares you opinion however, should, for all intended purposes read up on the way things are and getting worse due to the worlds economic situation right now. For example, the state of California alone euthanizes between 6 to 800.000 dogs each year, mostly thanks to those wonderful puppy mills, you know, the dog for Christmas type of thing but not really. PETA among others, have written many reports on that, if one cares enough to read about it of cours.

              Does this mean that supposedly all of us do not care about the animals that are "not that lucky"?Well, I’m not even going in to that subject. We would all like to see a "no-kill" policy taken to it’s highest limits but also being a realist, due to the lack of people caring for their animals in the first place hence the over population, the problem could be reduced to manageable proportions. All facilities are in place for some time now but it is people who are not responsible enough to follow through with it. Financial assistance is in place, so is the spay & neuter clinic in conjuction with IVS (they need to get paid too).

              Back to you now, whoever you are. And you have the nerve to tell us we are the ones that have to wake up? I have never insulted anyone regardsless of what they write and there is absolutely no intent here either but I do believe that you need to brush up on your general information pertaining to all of the above and perhaps your vision will receive a whole new outlook as to how things must be done, not should or like to be done, with all due respect.

              I have a feeling I will have to read one or two more letters like yours. I’ll be waiting!

              • Anonymous says:

                While I am new to Cayman, I would like to respond to what i am getting out of this post.  First of all let me say I am saddend to see the number of animals that are not cared for properly.  I walk downtown to see a female dog being followed by several males – more puppies on the way.  A walk on the beach is beautiful until you see a thin dog who is covered in mange.  It is very sad to see the dog down the street chained to a tree and it is very sad to read about the abuse caused by a human hand.  This is a beautiful island and the people here are wonderful.  I have been observing and watching and i’m wonderingif anyone can answer my questions.

                My first questions would be this – Why are there not more animal welfare organizations on this island?  Obviously with this population there is room for other shelters and other groups to become organized to help share the load of caring for these animals. 

                If you have a group of individulas who want to help and be an organized group, is this something that the CIHS is going to support or will they feel threatened?  Believe it or not most rescue agencies work together because it is for the benefit of the animals.  Organizations who can work together can accomplish twice as much as they would standing alone.  So tell me, does CARE and CIHS work together?

                I think we all need to remember that we can make a difference and by working together, it lessens the load.  If you spead the weight out, it becomes easier to carry.

                I would love to see Cayman become an island where animals are safe, where the animal population is controlled by spay/neuter, where there are no more animals sick, dying and abused.  Most of all i would like to see this island as an island where everyone is educated on how to care for animals.

                We should remeber that these animals look to us for food, water, shelter, love and companionship.  They deserve to be treated fairly and for those of you who have pets, you know what i mean.  You know when they are sad, happy and afraid.  Dogs are the best gift God ever gave the human race, why do you think DOG is GOD spelled backwards. 

                If people pulled together, this could be the best island for animals and people.  Maybe we all need to put our selfish thoughts away and think about what is best for the animals and what we can do as individuals and groups to help.

                I’m calling Cayman home for now and I would love to see groups get organized and start making a difference, i know i would help.

                One final comment is this:  If you are a landlord, please reconsider allowing people to have pets!!

  7. Anonymous says:

    "Why judge our culture?"

    So if Caymanians are questioned, we are questioning god?? why because Caymanians are closer to god than any other society?? If the good ‘ol Christians weren’t questioned slavery, bigotry, genocide, discrimination and many other such behaviour would still be allowed.  Cayman is not your bubble in which you are can decide what is right and wrong, as you please, grow up…seriously…that comment takes the cake for ignorance and clearly you don’t get out much. I feel sorry that gods name is in the same sentence as your comment, have you ever read religious texts? because they teach that all creatures great and small are part of gods creation.  That comment is an embarrassment for Caymanians and Christians alike.  In a religious context (since you claim to be a Christian) we are obligated to protect the more vulnerable in our society. The whole point of religion is to inspire love, kindness and tolerance, if you are not capable of all three then you are not a moral follower of god, you are a coward hiding behind gods name and you will be judged as you judge others. Again GROW UP and get a better education! In the meantime I suggest you don’t get a dog.

     
  8. Ron Moser says:

    Over the week-end, I have read this letter with a bit more attention to detail. I feel compelled to add another comment, in particular the presumed "in your face" cruelty part putting Cayman on top of the list.

    With respect that the author seem to have lived abroad here and there, I do wonder where that was. Sure, cruelty is just about everywhere but to place Cayman on top of the list is not only an extreme statement but also incorrect. Allow me to illustrate this a bit, things that have popped up that may explain what and where "in your face" cruelty really is.

    A few examples:

    Puerto Rico: Dead dog beach, where homeless dogs are being shot just for sport, cock fighting is their national pastime, mass street poisoning of feral cats – Antigua: Hundreds of donkeys being left to multiply and starve to death – Trinidad, Jamaica and Belize are notorious for outright animal abuse based on the mass publications by tourists that continue to write letters to the authorities with no result – China: Cats, dogs and a host of other furry animals are being skinned alive to apply their fur to toys and what not – Philipines: Widescale dog consumption – India and Bangladesh: Animals are not even a consideration in that part of the world – USA and Europe: Widescale dog- and cock fighting, importing exotic birds for game hunting, thousands upon thousands of dogs being "dropped off", in the middle of nowhere that is so owners can go on their holidays in the hope someone else will pick them up, if not run over first or died of starvation and/or abuse.

    This is just the tip of the iceberg that comes to mind. Having said that, this in no way seeks to excuse cruelty in any form or in any country but again also not a reason to label Cayman as being on the top of the list. In my huble opinion, I think Cayman compared to other countries is doing better than most. Sure, room for improvement is always present. I therefore also trust that the respected author will do her part in advancing general animal welfare by volunteering, donate or whatever else can be done besides just writing about it. Writing about it is a very good thing but there has to be a follow-up aswell to make it work. The Humane Society and/or the DOA can not do it alone, they need help, a lot of it so come out and your part in the fight against animal cruelty. Don’t delay, do it now!

  9. Anonymous says:

    Why judge our culture?  Caymanian culture is different.  Do not tells us what to do.  We should be allowed to treat animals and homosexuals as we want.  We are a Christian country and questionning what we do is a challenge to God and our entire way of life.

    • Anonymous says:

      "Why judge our culture". I presume this is brilliant irony on the part of the writer which might be, alas, lost on many people teetering on the brink of such horrible savagery and bigotry. If it is not irony, then we show signs of a very sick society indeed.

    • Anonymous says:

      I am a Caymanian and you are what we call "Ignant". It is your close mindedness and egocentrism that allows this sort of behaviour to perpetuate. God has not told you to beat or mistreat your animals. Take responsibility for your actions and beliefs and try not to use God or Christianity as a cop-out. Once you do this, you will find that you and your animals will live a much happier and more fulfilling life.

    • N Brown says:

      I am a Caymaninan and am absolutely appalled by this response. How dare you justify descrimnation and cruelty with a claim of christianity? Lest we forget that God created all living things (animals and homosexuals). I rebuke the thought that being a christian Caymanian gives anyone the right to cruelty and you should be ashamed to insinuate the same. It is ignorant thinking like this which substantiates both the need to educate the community about respecting and caring for our animals and; the importance of prosecuting and penalizing persons who believe that they have a right to abuse and torture them. I too applaud the writer for speaking out and hope that my fellow Caymanians will make some positive steps towards eradicating this type of thinking.

    • Anonymous says:

      Why judge our culture?  It’s because of sheer arrogance and ignorance such as this type of ever prevolent attitude that Cayman has this problem in the first place.  If you want to quote the bible and God’s meaning for animals and humans then you should be reminded that God created animals and humans equally!  I see nowhere in any religious writings where God gave humans permission to treat animals so horrifically – so why on earth would you feel you have the right?  That kind of attitude is despicable, you should be embarrassed and ashamed.  You give the Cayman culture a bad name – we are certainly not all like you!

    • Anonymous says:

      This "Why judge our culture?  Caymanian culture is different.  Do not tells us what to do.  We should be allowed to treat animals and homosexuals as we want.  We are a Christian country and questionning what we do is a challenge to God and our entire way of life." is the most horrendous shocking, offensive, repugnant thing I have heard in a very very long time.  It is very hard not to judge your culture when aspects of it are so repulsive and hypocritical.  I know that this statement (above) does not represent the majority of Caymanians but it is very scary that anyone can think this way.  How can you claim to be a "christian country" if you think it’s okay to treat animals any way you please.  Didn’t Jesus say something about how when you treat the "least of God’s creatures" badly, you are treating God badly?  Sometimes culture and what is right are not the same thing!  If your culture is to abuse and neglect animals then your culture needs to CHANGE.  In parts of Africa it is "culture" to undertake genital mutation on female girls, and in China it is "culture" to kill baby girls ….but these ‘cultures’ do not match our modern understanding of what is right and what is wrong, and they certainly don’t meet our criteria of ‘what would Jesus do’.  I am not even a "Christian" as such, although I do believe in God, but religion / culture is not the issue here…what is the issue is how can you be so hypocritical as to think it’s enough to go to church every Sunday but that it’s okay to tie your dog up outside your house with no food or to let him roam the streets where he can be killed by cars or disease.  Practice what you preach!  I am so angry that this doesn’t make as much sense at it should but the real point is – treat all of God’s creatures with respect, if you don’t then your ‘culture’ is not as ‘Christian’ as you think it is and it therefore needs to CHANGE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    • Anonymous says:

      This type of attitude sends shivers up my spine It is disgusting and dispicable and shows character of the absolute worst kind. It calls to mind the attitude of many "to-be" criminals and all around evil.

      I am a Caymanian and as much as I love Cayman I do not believe that God made us to stand above all other creatures, nor do I believe someone with as little respect as you obviously have for life in all forms could ever truely call themselves a "christian".

      This mentality is beyond horrific and I sincerely hope that you either actually find God one day, or that you find your own way behind bars. In my opinion people like you are a serious danger to our society.

       

  10. Ron Moser says:

    Being pretty active in animal recue/welfare myself, I find it particularly sad that 99% of the cruelty happens to what we so charmingly call "mutts" like they are second hand animals. It appears to be proven that all our so-called "pedigrees" all stem from their now very distant forfathers, the wolves. After centuries of breeding techniques to create new "models", I think it would be very fair to say that all pedigrees are in fact the original mutts of the world but gave them a name so we can show them off to the neighbours. Current additionally crossbred species, should  be recognized as "unidentified canines" rather than the mutts of todays world. In other words, why is it that there is so little protection and/or respect for todays mutts in comparison to protecting original mutts (pedigrees)?

    Perhaps this bit of information may persuade people to adopt these later "originals’ from the Humane Societies, rather than spending a ton of money for an ancient mutt, from a local perspective, most of which do not belong in the tropics to begin with and with all their associated problems of such.

    Get smart, get a "real" mutt!

  11. Jackee says:

    As a Caymanian, Iam indeed embarassed not only by the content of this article, but more importantly by the fact that all that has been said is true. Having travelled and lived in the US and other islands in the Caribbean, I am sad to say that this is not a phenomenon that is restricted to Cayman as it seems to be the norm in most Caribbean islands that I have travelled to. And, as has rightly been noted the true issue here is a lack of education. We’ve been raised in a culture that neither recognises the rights of animals nor promotes compassion and respect for them. This is both by the government and the people. Until there is a change in what is culturally accepted (through education and example) then the efforts of animla lovers here in Cayman will be slow moving and animals will continue to suffer. Let me applaud the author of this article and those brave enough to stand up and speak for the animals as they have no voice to do so themselves.

  12. anonymous says:

    In answer to one of the comments about a unit specific to the cause, back in 2006 as a result of two separate complaints about dangerous animals a Memorandum of Understanding between the RCIPS and the Department of Agriculture to clarify the responsibilities of the two parties under the Animal Law (Revision 2003) and relevant regulations was entered into. Two different complainants both encountered similar experiences when they reported incidents involving animals to the RCIPS and DOA. In short, the RCIPS were referring animal reports to the DOA and vice-versa with neither department actually investigating the problems. However, meetings between the two, were apparently successful and an agreement to create an MOU, which, would define their working relationship when it came to animal investigations, was made. As a result Maggie Baldino was given the new position of  Animal Welfare Officer for the Cayman Islands.   It was said that this was set to make a difference in the lives of the animals and their owners of the Cayman Islands.  I beg to differ.  I agree there obviously needs to be a better force put in place and that one person simply cannot handle the welfare needs of this island.

  13. Anonymous says:

    Be advised that this article is the tip of the iceberg. Animal abuse is common in the Cayman Islands and if you want verification of this statement go speak with any of the vets on the islands and listen to their animal abuse horror stories it will break your heart.

    It would seem to me that families where domestic violence is expressed would not only express itself with the humans in the family but the animals would also be recipients of this violence.

  14. Anonymous says:

    I am not sure (as a previous writer wrote) that the humane society can do much about cruelty reports.  Last year I reported a case of two puppies tied up on a very short rope, baking in the  hot sun, and crying all day. I was told by the society that they cannot go onto someones property and remove the dogs. However they did say, if I could bring the dogs in they would take them…..! …..so then I assume I would be breaking the law, by removal of the puppies.

  15. Anonymous says:

     

    Unbelievable! What appalling and completely avoidable cases! The neglect and cruelty to animals is shameful. Thank God people have stepped in to rescue these poor souls. Dogs have been domesticated for over 15,000 years and this type of behavior still exists in these Islands? Cayman should be embarrassed. People need to take responsibility for their children and for the animals that they adopt into their "families". A dog’s loyalty is unfaltering. Too bad we cannot say the same about people.

  16. mdu says:

    I think the Police and Courts have enough to deal with now than to have to add cruelity to animals as apart of it’s concern.However, we should have a unit specific to this cause, like the USA does.They have the same arresting powers etc as the police and can hand down sentences appropriate to the crimes being commited against these defenseless animals.

  17. Anonymous says:

    Are the Humane Society even able or willing to respond to cruelty cases?  It has been my experience that most cases are referred to the Department of Agriculture and they don’t have any powers to actually intervene and seize a dog.  The Humane Society should be given bigger grants from the government with thespecific job of being out in the community putting a stop to such cruelty.  They should have to meet specific targets and respond directly to calls from members of the public.  At the moment, only concerned individuals who are prepared to step in.  The Humane Society should be more pro-active in trying to crack down on these cases.

  18. Kiralee says:

    Wonderful article.  Let us keep hoping that the Cayman Islands Government will one day step in and ensure that this behaviour is totally unacceptable in today’s society.  It all comes down to education. I for one was appalled at what I witnessed on the island by way of animal neglect and cruelty during my time on the islands.  It is hard to believe that such a small island could let a problem like this become so out of control.  It all comes down to education, or rather the lack thereof.

  19. Joanne Oliver says:

    Excellent article.  Well written and to the point.  I feel that the majority of animal cruelty in Cayman is through sheer ignorance and a ‘slave’ mentality.  A lot of people I have challenged when seeing animal cruelty have said ‘it’s my dog, I own it, I can do what I like to it’.  Pathetic excuse.  The Police and Courts need to effectively deal more effectively with this problem,  by taking further action when incidents are reported.   Around the globe, cruelty occurs to animals however a compassionate, sensible and well-educated society does not and quite rightly should not, tolerate it.  I would urge anyone seeing animal cruelty to report it.  The more it is reported, the more can be done to stop it – and anyone with a conscience and a bit of common sense knows that.  You never know, if you report an incident, you may be saving a life.