Hello! I need some help on how to get my parents from hitting my dog. My parents are very abusive towards him. He barks a lot because my parents constantly put him in the cage and leave him there for hours on end. My dad hits the dog when he doesn’t sit quick enough when he tells him to, when he has an accident in the cage, or just because. My mom doesn’t like him because after she hit him, he nipped at her finger, so now she is really cruel to him. She doesn’t allow him out of the cage during the day and she has no tolerance for him. I can’t speak out against them because I’m too scared they’ll yell and be irrational. They don’t see any problem with it and my older sister doesn’t do anything although she doesn’t like it either. Please I need help! I really care for my dog and I want him to have a good life and for him to not be in fear every time he sees my dad.
- Seeing someone harm an innocent creature can make you feel a lot of emotions like worried, sad and angry. You are strong for having empathy towards animals and making an honest effort to protect your dog.
- Animal cruelty is dangerous, and can escalate over time. Sometimes abuse of animals is a sign of a bigger problem – like someone in the home is also being hurt. If you or anyone in the home is also in danger, it is ok to speak up and tell someone. Every creature, human or animal, deserves to be safe and cared for. If you or your sister need help, you can call 1-800-422-4453. You can also text HELLO to 741741. Someone is available at both of these numbers 24/7 if you need help or are in danger. If you are ever really in danger, you can also call 911.
- Is there a supportive adult (maybe another family member or someone in your community/school) that could help you and your sister talk with your parents? It’s important for your parents to know you’re scared and upset by what they do, and having someone there to support you can make this tough conversation easier. You may try explaining to them that you love your dog, that it hurts your feelings when they hit him and that you feel it’s wrong.
- There are organizations that work to protect animals such as The Human Society, PETA, ASPCA. You can find information on their websites about animal abuse, and ways that others can help. These organizations have local chapters, or offices, that will help if you choose to contact them. If you decide you want to call someone to help you, consider asking a trusted adult to help you make that call. If you cannot find the number of your local office, you can call 911 and ask for help. It is very important you do not put yourself in danger, which is why it would be a good idea to involve an adult to help you.
- Perhaps you and/or your sister can volunteer to help train your dog or take over care of your dog so that he can be out of the crate more often and your parents don’t have to have as much responsibility or interaction with him. Consider making a list of activities you can do with your dog. For example, you can take your dog for walks (make sure it’s a safe area for walking, like a park or on a sidewalk), and visit a relative or friend’s house where you can stay away for a while with your dog. You can look into training classes for obedience for your dog, or you can teach him some simple obedience by watching videos or reading online directions.
- It may feel very hard to do, but try to understand why your parents may react to your dog the way they do. If they are very stressed out right now, their stress could be coming out in how quickly they’re angry with the dog’s behaviors. It’s possible your parents may learn what animal abuse is, and hear how upset you are, and decide to change.
- Thank you for asking for help with this. This is an important animal rights issue that goes hidden within many homes. By asking for help with this, you are creating awareness for many others. Like child abuse, animal abuse is often hidden and unseen by outsiders, therefore making it difficult to detect and report. Your dog is blessed to have a compassionate family member who cares enough to speak up and seek help.