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Cruelty and neglect cross all social and economic boundaries and media reports suggest that animal abuse is common in both rural and urban areas.
Intentional cruelty to animals is strongly correlated with other crimes, including violence against people.
Hoarding behavior often victimizes animals. Sufferers of a hoarding disorder may impose severe neglect on animals by housing far more than they are able to adequately take care of. Serious animal neglect (such as hoarding) is often an indicator of people in need of social or mental health services.
Surveys suggest that those who intentionally abuse animals are predominantly men under 30, while those involved in animal hoarding are more likely to be women over 60.
Most common victims
The animals whose abuse is most often reported are dogs, cats, horses and livestock. Based on the 1,423 U.S. cruelty cases on pet-abuse.coms 2011 digest in which species of the victim was specified:
70.1% involved dogs.
20.9% involved cats.
24.1% involved other animals.
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