Distressing images were circulating the internet this week when still footage of a 19 year-old Dubbo man pulling feathers from a distressed emu were released.
The man was arrested for recklessly beating and causing prolonged suffering to an animal. The incident allegedly took place on Monday in Quambone in western NSW. He received bail to appear back in Dubbo Local Court next month.
The alleged incident has created uproar online both locally and nationally. Many took to social media to vent their disgust.
Dubbo resident Natasha Rankmore said the incident shows a lack of respect for native wildlife.
"All involved should be charged, you can tell they aren't off the land cause (sic) if they were they'd have more respect," she said.
All involved should be charged, you can tell they aren't off the land cause (sic) if they were they'd have more respect.Natasha Rankmore.
The Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (RSPCA) show this isn't a stand alone incident. During the 2017/2018 financial year 15,451 cruelty complaints were investigated in NSW alone.
Four hundred and four of these incidents had charges laid but only 66 people were successfully charged.
A spokesperson from the RSPCA said not all complaints result in a prosecution.
"In many cases there may actually be nothing wrong or education resolves the issue and improves the animal's welfare," the spokesperson said.
"When a more severe breach is detected it may result in a formal caution, fine, or in the worst cases, a prosecution."
The Animal Justice Party have released a statement in regards to the incident calling for harsher sentencing, a sentiment similar to many on commenting on social media platforms.
"This act of cruelty is sickening, we don't want this to become another case of lenient sentencing that will do nothing to deter further acts of extreme animal mistreatment," MP Emma Hurst MLC said.
"Australians hate animal cruelty and we need to have a no tolerance stance against those that intentionally hurt animals."
The RSPCA said if people witness some kind of animal cruelty they should report on their hotline 1300 CRUELTY (1300 278 3589) or online at rspcansw.org/reportcruelty.
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