Animal abuse acts alarming

Rally a good starting point for the Cowichan Valley

There’s no excuse for animal abuse.

The Cowichan Valley has earned a notorious reputation for some horrific recent stories of animal mistreatment. We’re sure it goes on elsewhere, too, but seemed to reach epidemic proportions in this region.

Fortunately, there are some people wanting to do something about it and a rally in Duncan last week is a good starting point for taking measures to end this ghastly practice.

The formation of the Cowichan Cares: United For A Paws group will act as a watchdog, keeping an eye on the situation in consultation with government officials to ensure some action is taken.

Just like the lobbying for stricter gun control laws in the United States being launched by a group of students, it takes a lot of determined people willing to put their necks on the line for a long period of time to change policies and step up enforcement.

Of course, the situation goes far beyond just the perceived abuse to possible mental health issues or drugs that might be triggering these responses from people.

And then making any headway in the legal system with charges is not going to be easy.

Penalties have long been far too lenient in dealing with these types of offenders. There needs to be guidelines imposed for those convicted to also enter rehabilitation programs along with any sentences.

Many young people are well aware of the short arm of the law and how they’ll basically get off scott-free. That needs to change as much as anything else, regardless what happened in a person’s past that led them to commit such a heinous act.

For the sake of defenceless animals everywhere, punishments must be severe. With all the horrible incidents that have happened here, the Cowichan Valley must lead the way.

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