I read about this animal cruelty case in the papers today. The guy left his Alaskan malamute ( an Artic sled dog) in his backyard without any water in direct sunlight. The dog died of heatstroke and was found with blood foaming at the mouth by a neighbour.
The owner could have claimed negligence and said that he did not know that an Artic dog (which has 2 layers of fur) left in a confined space without water and in direct sunlight would suffer heatstroke, if not for the fact that a previous complaint against him 2 years ago had resulted in an SPCA inspector inspecting his dog and advising him that the dog needed to be kept in an air-conditioned place or failing that, at at least he should put up blinds to shield the dog from direct sunlight. He ignored both suggestions.
The offence carried a maximum fine of 10k and a year's jail term. The guy got off with a 3k fine and no jail term. Unbelievable.
What's the point of a punishment if it doesn't even hurt the offender in question? Isn't that the whole purpose of a punishment, to deter the offender from repeating his crime? They might as well have just told him that he was a really really bad boy and make him promise not to do it again.
Offenders are rarely jailed in animal abuse cases here, even if the animal in question dies, as is the case here. It's just considered not that big a deal. Would the sentence have been different if it had been a child, instead of a dog? Definitely. But is it really that much different, both are pretty much defenceless and completely reliant on their caretakers for their well-being.
You know, if I was the judge, I would order the guy dressed up in winter clothing and then handcuffed and left in the middle of a field on a hot day, without water. Just to give him a taste of what it feels like. Then I will haul his ass down to jail for the full year.