Polk County Publishing Company, P.O. Box 1267, Livingston, TX. 77351 - (936) 327-4357

San Jacinto News Times - Local News

Copyright 2015 - Polk County Publishing Company


Animal cruelty not tolerated in county


COLDSPRING — In the latter part of December 2014, San Jacinto County Sheriff Greg Caper's office received numerous calls regarding animal neglect/animal cruelty in the county. Thus far, deputies who have responded to those calls and have successfully mitigated the problems without having to file criminal charges against the owners. Unless charges are filed, animal cruelty cases remain protected and persons/addresses involved are not released to the public. In one case recently, the sheriff's deputies ran into Precinct 3 Constable Sam Houston, who was working an investigation into the same animal and animal owner as the sheriff's office. Jointly, a solution was offered for the owner to voluntarily give up ownership of the animal to a horse rescue provider in the area to rehabilitate the horse back to being a viable animal. This allowed the constable and the sheriff to avoid filing criminal charges against the owner and having to seize the animal through the courts. Unlike an individual who would intentionally hurt, abuse or injure animals, this case involved a person who simply could not afford to take care of the animal any longer and was not aware of a place to turn for help. The investigation supported these facts. Sheriff Capers and Constable Houston agree that times are hard for people in San Jacinto County. It is not unusual for a citizen to acquire a horse or other animal as a gift for their daughters and sons, even without the ability to maintain that responsibility. "As wonderful as it is for a parent to provide for their children, it is important for people to recognize that domesticated animals need to be cared for as well. This is not a cheap investment. Horses need more than grass to survive," said Sheriff Capers. Horses and other pets, unlike their wild ancestors, are generally not able to care for themselves. They need water, food and shelter. Grooming and handling is necessary as well. The message is simple, "There are alternatives to simply letting an animal wither to death only because you can no longer afford the responsibility." Ego and community standing will not play a part in the court process if law enforcement is required to prosecute an animal cruelty case. If a person takes the necessary steps to protect and care for their animals, even even if it means giving them up to someone who can, they may avoid the costly, painful and embarrassing aspect of being a defendant in a criminal court case. If you need information on the different animal rescue providers in our area, please feel free to contact a local veterinarian or the SPCA for information. These bona-fide providers will remove the animal by taking ownership and rehabilitate it into a viable animal. Most of the time this service is free to the owner who voluntarily gives up their ownership to better provide for the animal. The providers gain their support by selling animals that have been rehabilitated into acceptable homes and families. Regardless of your status in life, if you choose to take on the responsibility of animal ownership, the important message is, do not let your animals suffer. Animal Cruelty is a felony offense, punishable by prison time and/or fines. Law enforcement in San Jacinto County will continue to take on the responsibility of protecting those who cannot speak for themselves, be it human or animal. Do the right thing when it comes to the responsibility of pet/animal ownership that you have taken on.


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