Kids Hurting Animals

If reports are true that Salvador Ramos (the alleged shooter in the deadly attack on Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas) posted videos of cruelty to animals online and bragged about throwing dead cats at people’s houses before he opened fire on defenseless children or that Payton Gendron (the alleged shooter in Buffalo, New York) wrote about stabbing and beheading a cat and posted photos of the dead animal online, it would come as no surprise to PETA. The FBI warns that harming animals is a sign of more carnage to come. Amid the current epidemic of youth violence, PETA urges everyone to report every act of cruelty against animals and calls on authorities to take each animal abuse claim seriously—for the sake of the animal victims and to help prevent future harm. More lives may depend on it.

PETA keeps an updated list of reported incidents in which young people commit acts of cruelty to animals. Many acts of cruelty go unreported. This resource is meant to illustrate how prevalent the problem is and provide educators with tools to educate students on what it means to have compassion for all living beings. If you aren’t an educator, please share this page with one you know and inform them about TeachKind—PETA’s humane education division—and our empathy-building educational resources.

Forty-three percent of perpetrators of schoolyard massacres commit acts of cruelty to animals first (Source)—it’s time for educators to take action by implementing humane education.

Browse the List


State Laws

Section 732. Control and Discipline of Child.

“A. Each district board of education shall adopt a policy for the discipline of all children attending public school in that district, and for the investigation of reported incidents of bullying. The policy shall provide options for the methods of discipline of the students and shall define standards of conduct to which students are expected to conform. The policy shall: . . .

“10. Provide for an educational program as designed and developed by the State Department of Education and in consultation with the Office of Juvenile Affairs for students and parents in preventing, identifying, responding to and reporting incidents of bullying.” (Source)

Section 1181. Character Education Program.

“A. The board of education of every school district in this state may develop and implement a comprehensive program for character education in any single grade or combination of grades prekindergarten through twelfth. The character education program shall focus on development of character traits, the in [sic] students.” (Source)

Reported Animal Abuse Cases

April 2022/Tulsa, Oklahoma

KJRH.com reported that a minor was caught on film viciously beating, slamming onto concrete, and hauling away a dog by the flesh of the neck—apparently in punishment for wandering a short distance away from her during a walk.

June 2018/Rogers County, Oklahoma

NewsOn6.com reported that a 14-year-old boy had been arrested and was facing felony cruelty-to-animals charges for allegedly shooting his neighbor’s four horses. According to authorities, he shot each one in the heart and left them for dead.

February 2013/Tahlequah, Oklahoma

KRMG.com reported that local authorities were investigating the death of a pit bull after a teenager allegedly posted a photo online showing the dog after he had been shot to death by an arrow. The teen also allegedly posted a boastful statement about killing any pit bulls who show up near his home.