High Stress Leads to Disturbing Abuse Trend

Friday, December 12th 2008, 1:01 am
By: News 9

By Rusty Surette, NEWS 9

OKLAHOMA CITY -- During stressful times, some people begin targeting their anger toward their pets. The disturbing trend could be the result of how some people are handling the economy.

A Grady County man found this out first hand when he made a tragic discovery on the side of the road.

"It was a pet carrier and I looked inside and there was a dog. And I looked closer, the dog's face was beat in and his throat was cut," Billy Bitsche said.

Bitsche immediately called police who are now looking for whom ever dumped the dead dog on the side of the road.

"Don't want the dog? Take it to the dog pound. Give it away. Don't kill it. Don't dump it," Bitsche said

This disturbing incident it may be happening more often as the economy continues to affect people.

"It's just something that's helpless you can take your anger out on," Christy Counts with the Central Oklahoma Humane Society said.

Counts said she wouldn't be surprised if there's a common link between the dog's death, and other recent cases of animal abuse.

"I really think that when economic times come to a tough place, a lot of times violence increases in the community and really at-risk populations like children and animals can take the brunt of that," Counts said.

Last month care takers found a feral cat that had been shot and killed in Oklahoma City. Around the same time, deer breeders in the metro said someone killed their prize buck with a bow and arrow.

Counts knows all animal abuse cases aren't economy-related, but it doesn't matter. Stress or no stress, she said there's no excuse for it.

"In a time right now when we're all struggling in all sorts of areas, we need to help each other and not hurt each other," Counts said.

Animals aren't alone, a number of Oklahoma agencies are reporting an increase in the number of spousal and child abuse cases that are linked to high levels of stress.