Kids Hurting Animals

As mental-health and law-enforcement experts well know, cruelty to animals and violence against humans are inextricably linked. Many educators are aware that serial killers and school shooters—including alleged killers Salvador Ramos, Payton Gendron, Nikolas Cruz, and Ethan Crumbley—tend to have a history of cruelty to animals, and Sandy Hook Promise has cruelty to animals on its “10 Critical Warning Signs of Violence” list.

Forty-three percent of perpetrators of schoolyard massacres commit acts of cruelty to animals first. Educators can help prevent future tragedies by including kindness to animals in the curriculum. 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. Lives may depend on it.

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State Laws

Non-codified Policy

“The Wisconsin Character Education Partnership (WCEP) promotes the intentional, proactive efforts of educators to instill in all Wisconsin’s students, core universal ethical values such as integrity, honesty, fairness, responsibility, and respect for themselves and for others through character education.” (Source)

Reported Animal Abuse Cases

January 2024/Sussex, Wisconsin

Heavy.com reported that a teen had allegedly suffocated a Chihuahua named Batman with a plastic bag and stabbed him in the chest with scissors, reportedly while babysitting a 4-year-old child at the Waukesha County home where he lived with his guardians. The teen apparently admitted to police that she “just wanted the dog to leave her alone” and that she “lashes out” when angry. She reportedly faces a felony charge of mistreatment of animals with the use of a deadly weapon.

April 2021/Jackson County, Wisconsin

WQOW.com reported that two teenagers were accused of torturing and decapitating an opossum and then posting the attack to Snapchat.

April 2016/Richland Center, Wisconsin

News8000.com reported that an online video appeared to show two teenagers torturing a deer. The video allegedly depicted one young man riding a deer who seemed to be bleeding and struggling to escape, as well as a deer fetus and a pile of entrails.

March 2014/Fond du Lac, Wisconsin

Fox6Now.com reported that a 10-year-old boy would face charges in juvenile court after allegedly putting bleach on a puppy and throwing him into a dumpster. The boy reportedly said that he committed this abuse because the puppy had been “biting at his feet.”