Second Alleged Incident of Cruelty to Animals by Juvenile Prompts PETA Call for Action

After Dog Is Reportedly Stabbed With Pocketknife, TeachKind Urges District to Teach Compassion in the Classroom—for Whole Community’s Sake

For Immediate Release:
September 6, 2016

Brooke Rossi 202-483-7382

Hixson, Tenn.

Less than a year after a Hamilton County High School student allegedly stomped on and killed a raccoon in a video shared to Snapchat, a 10-year-old Hixson boy has reportedly stabbed his family’s puppy in the face multiple times with a pocketknife. In response, TeachKind—PETA’s humane-education division—has sent letters this morning to Hamilton County Department of Education renewing its call for courses in humane education to begin immediately. The group also included free copies of its “Bullies Are Just Cowards: Report Abuse When You See It!” poster.

TeachKind and PETA—whose shared motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to abuse in any way”—have also asked the district’s superintendent to add a prohibition on cruelty to animals to the district’s policies and to make sure that students know that there are penalties for abusing animals.

“We’re facing a bullying epidemic, and if this most recent case of a young boy stabbing a puppy in the face is true, it demonstrates the child’s shocking and dangerous lack of empathy for others,” says PETA Senior Director of Youth Outreach and Campaigns Marta Holmberg. “With at least two alleged incidents of gruesome cruelty to animals committed by juveniles in Hamilton County in less than a year, TeachKind is once again calling on schools to waste no time in teaching empathy for all living beings and reminding students to report cruelty when they see it.”

Leading mental-health professionals and law-enforcement agencies advise that perpetrators of violent acts against animals are often repeat offenders who pose a serious threat to the community at large. TeachKind believes that intervention should start early and is available to send materials to schools, suggest lesson plans, and even host classroom presentations for students of all ages via Skype—all for free. TeachKind’s newest program, Share the World, is appropriate for even the youngest learners.

TeachKind’s letters are available upon request. For more information, please visit


Stay up to date on the latest vegan trends and get breaking animal rights news delivered straight to your inbox!

By submitting this form, you’re acknowledging that you have read and agree to our privacy policy and agree to receive e-mails from us.

Get the Latest Tips—Right in Your Inbox
We’ll e-mail you weekly with the latest in vegan recipes, fashion, and more!

By submitting this form, you’re acknowledging that you have read and agree to our privacy policy and agree to receive e-mails from us.