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Use of Shock Collar on Kids Prompts Call for Ban

Written by PETA | September 30, 2009
shadowscope / CC
Todd Marcum

Residents of Salem, Oregon, were stunned to find out that their neighbor, 41-year-old Todd Marcum, was using a shock collar to torment his four children—who range from age 3 to age 9. At a trial this week, Marcum pleaded guilty to four counts of criminal mistreatment and was sentenced to three years of probation.

The lieutenant who worked on the case said that Marcum “got great entertainment from chasing his younger child around the house with a dog collar to the point the child was crying and afraid the shock was going to come.”

Shock collars hurt, and they shouldn’t be used on anyone for any reason. That’s exactly why PETA is calling on the mayor of Salem to ban shock collars in the city completely. No human or animal should live in fear of being shocked. In addition to causing animals physical pain and potential injury, shock collars can terrify and lead to psychological problems, including severe anxiety and displaced aggression. The anxiety and confusion caused by repeated shocks can lead to changes in heart or respiration rate as well as gastrointestinal disorders.

I think that most parents are smart enough to know not to shock their kids—but many people get fooled by dominance trainers into thinking that shock collars are the only way to discipline their dog. Please always remember that there are more effective, humane ways to train your dog.

Written by Liz Graffeo

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  • Marie says:

    Thats great that they are banned in Salem, but why not go after the manufacturer in Knoxvill Tennessee? He thinks this product is something to be proud of. Go figure.

  • Kurt K says:

    Hey Jake Before you pass judgement on Americans please tell me where you are from. I’m sure you have some darlings in your society as well. Don’t group all Americans in with this asshole. You’d be hard pressed to find an American that doesn’t find this kind of treatment toward children to be horific.

  • Marea Gray says:

    Pathetic pig!! How about we strap one of this hideous devices around his stupid neck and see how he likes it!! People who get gratification from pain and suffering from either people or animals needs to hung drawn and quartered for my money!! Over it totally its easy just two simple things.. Love your kids and animals and respect them.. how simple can it be..?

  • Myrna says:

    Hey! Why didn’t the judge grant permission to have a shock collar be placed on him for a duration of 1 week! so that he knows what his kids felt! Poor children!!! Now people should open their eyes and see that it too hurts animals! IDIOT!!!

  • rosita says:

    This guy should be locked up and his kids should get a new dad!

  • Ashley Poole says:

    This is incredibly scary and extremely SICK to think someone to do that to ANY child much less their own children. This man deserves much more than probation and hopefully the kids were given to a caring loving home. That could not only kill those children but mess them up for life. He deserves YEARS in prison not probation.

  • Michele says:

    Over the past few years with all of the attention on Michael Vick many comments on the PETA files would suggest that jail time for Vick was harsh and that they were “just dogs”. Now it seems that in this case they were “just children” as this abuser was only given probation as a sentence. Why are animals and children some of the worlds most vulnerable earthlings not protected with harsher penalties?

  • Rev. Meg Schramm says:

    Where was Mom during all of this? If she was in the house or even knew about it the kids need to be removed from her custody also. I find it hard to believe one of the kids especially a 13 year old would not have told her this was happening.

  • Jackie says:

    The Judge Rotenberg center continues to shock children who are on the Autism Spectrum in hopes of “curing” them of harmless behaviors. Such as stimming. If you feel for the children in this story show your support for the children who’s parents sent them to a gulag where every day involves being shocked. For more information click on the URL included with this post.

  • Joanna says:

    farah that is NOT how dogs are trained that’s how dogs are tortured.

  • jake says:

    america is probably one of the most interesting countries there is..really bizarre and some “creative” individuals roam the streets..anyway thats not enough of a harsh punishment for the guy. reALLY!?!? shock collar on ur kids?..lol only americans

  • farah says:

    That guy is clearly a lunatic. I didn’t know that such things even existed. That’s how dogs are trained? Sick

  • J D Allinder says:

    I’ve long known that shock collars are wrong. I can’t imagine how neurotic my dog would be if I incorporated electric shock into our training.

  • XXisarottenXX says:

    omg! i thought that was not used anymore! xs

  • Aneliese says:

    This story didn’t surprise me. I figured it would only be a matter of time before shock collars were used on people. Especially since in a few states parents can drop off there kids and leave them whatever those things are called. Way to go humanity.

  • Daz says:

    Hey. Only in America could this happen!!!! Or maybe China or Iran or most of the world. What’s gone wrong? Do we have no concience as a race?

  • Tom says:

    Rather than arrest him just to give him probation The judge should have ordered a psychiatric evaluation. anyone who would use a shock collar on their kids especially a 3 year old is probably mentally ill.

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