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More cases of animal cruelty in the media

More cruelty cases are attracting media attention, but CNY SPCA Executive Director Paul Morgan said it’s because he’s getting better at putting the word out, not because there are more cruelty cases in Onondaga County.

More cruelty cases are attracting media attention, but CNY SPCA Executive Director Paul Morgan said it’s because he’s getting better at putting the word out, not because there are more cruelty cases in Onondaga County.

— Steady statistics

In order to report an incidence of animal cruelty in Onondaga County, people can call the CNY SPCA at 454-3469, email the cruelty investigator at crueltyinvestigations@cnyspca.org, fill out an online cruelty report at cnyspca,org/animal_cruelty.htm or call 911. The agency received about 3,500 calls in 2011 and 1,623 so far in 2012.

“Those are just the calls we go out on, not all the calls we receive,” Morgan said. “A lot of those are more educational things that we can handle on the phone — people asking questions that they need answers to, so we don’t need to go out on those calls.”

There were 100 cases of animal abuse or neglect reported in 2010 in New York state alone, the most recent year for which statistics are available. Nationwide, the number is 1,106. Notably, these represent the reported cases. According to the Humane Society of the United States, most cases go unreported, though that is starting to change as public awareness grows. The numbers given by Morgan for 2011 and 2012 likely represent that shift.

The statewide breakdown is as follows: 36 reported cases of neglect/abandonment; 18 cases of hoarding; 15 beatings; seven shootings; four stabbings; three throwings; three thefts; three kickings/stompings; two cases of fighting; two cases of mutilation or torture; two cases of burning with fire or fireworks; one case each of bestiality, poisoning or drowning and two other unspecified cases of cruelty. In 63 percent of cases, the caregiver or owner was the alleged abuser.

New York had the highest number of animal beatings in the U.S. in 2010, according to Pet-Abuse.com, which compiles statistics from cruelty investigators across the nation. It’s also at the top of the list in hoarding and throwing, and near the top in kicking and stomping, neglect/abandonment and stabbing.

Overall, the most common types of abuse are neglect/abandonment, followed by hoarding, then shooting and fighting. Cats are most likely to be abused, followed by dogs.

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