There are people in this world who seem to go out of their way to prove that evil exists. They are the people who seem to enjoy hurting small animals just for pleasure or amusement. I’m not talking about hunters who are harvesting game for their supper table. I’m talking about the people who hurt animals because they think the cruelty is fun.
We have a lot of stray cats in my neighborhood. A couple of them recently had kittens. One litter was all black and another litter was gray. This past Saturday, my mother – who lives next door – noticed that one of the black kittens wasn’t using her back legs. They were just dragging behind her as she scooted forward with her front.
At this same time, there was a cute gray kitten that had decided he wanted to be an inside cat. My wife and I were talking about it, but hadn’t reached a firm decision on what to do. Sunday evening, that changed.
I hadn’t seen the gray one all day, but cats being cats, I didn’t think anything about it. Later, when my son knocked on the door with the cat in its hand, I knew why.
According to some of the neighborhood children, an older child across the street had taken the cat, put it in a chip bag that he declared was its “shelter”, dumped ants on it, doused it with water, and then “threw” it into the bushes. My son brought it to me still soaking wet, and at least one ant bite on me verifies that part of the tale as well.
I have not been calm enough to speak to the parents about the incident just yet, though that will happen quite soon. Frankly, the idea infuriates me. Children who engage in this kind of cruelty as kids often grow up to prefer even worse activities as adults.
It’s understandable that not everyone likes cats like I do. I understand that completely. However, it takes a particularly sick individual, even at the eighth grade age level, to do these kinds of things to a cat.
The evidence of what happened to the gray cat instantly had us wonder what had happened to the black one. It wasn’t in good shape, so my wife took it to the vet. Unfortunately, there was no choice but to put that one to sleep. However, knowing that there’s a child in the neighborhood who would hurt a kitten has me wondering how that kitten’s back got messed up in the first place.
Parents, please make sure your children know that this kind of behavior isn’t acceptable. If you see or learn that your child is doing this kind of thing, please get him or her counseling immediately. It’s a sign that your child is very sick, but it’s not a terminal condition. It can be fixed. You just have to accept that help is needed.