Recent disturbing local news reminded us that animal cruelty is in our own backyard. Literally. Maria Alarcon-Suarez’s 14-year old daughter beat their black lab puppy, Phoenix, on the head with a shovel, then set him on fire. While neighbors watched. Then, Maria Alarcon-Suarez watched as the dog rolled around crying, whimpering and terrified until the fire was out. But I’m not done. Maria Alarcon-Suarez then waited a day before seeking medical attention for this dog whose third-degree burn injuries were sustained over 40% of his body. Once at the vet, Maria Alarcon-Suarez lied, stating the dog was a stray.
1. You have a daughter who beats a dog on the head.
2. You have a daughter who sets fire to helpless dog.
3. You wait a day before taking this sweet, suffering dog to the vet.
4. You LIE to the vet.
5. You have serious issues.
For people who know me you know how difficult its been not to swear in this column. Very.
People, I have news for you: Jeffrey Dahmer started out torturing animals. Ted Bundy started out torturing animals. Charles Manson started out torturing animals. Maria Alarcon-Suarez has a future serial killer on her hands. And what was done to her 14-year old inhumane, disgusting excuse for a human-being daughter? Nothing. Nothing.
I work with an organization called Chain of Hope. We see a lot of animal cruelty. A lot. And I can tell you we’ve been to this neighborhood and people in ‘this neighborhood’ don’t care about animals, they don’t even care about humans. Obviously, the neighbors watched while this girl beat and set fire to the ‘family dog.’ Notice I say ‘family dog’ because in these neighborhoods the dogs are kept on chains and rarely given a second thought. Too bad for Phoenix on this particular day she was given a second thought by a mentally unstable, cruel and malicious 14-year old girl.
I pray every day that God takes away the pain from animals when they’re being tortured. Yet, having looked into the eyes of hundreds of dogs who have been abused, I know this isn’t the case. I know they feel every ounce of pain being intentionally inflicted on them. I know the pain, fear and confusion they feel when looking into the eyes of their ‘owner’ for whom they’d do anything, as they are being beaten.
It sickens me. I can’t believe in 2011 we allow animal abuse, animal cruelty and animal neglect to take place at the rate and magnitude it does and yet, nothing happens to the awful people to inflict it.
The media has covered this relentlessly which is a sign that animal cruelty is not and will not be tolerated.
Maria Alarcon-Suarez, I hope you take responsibility for having allowed this to happen and not doing anything about it. I can only imagine what you’ve done to your daughter, or allowed to be done, for her to even consider this horrible act of violence upon an innocent being.
A side note: whenever there is an animal cruelty case in the media, public outcry is amazing: donations to the vet/shelter treating the animal, foster homes, adoption applications, etc. Please, people, remember that certain vets and shelters always need financial donations as well as supplies and there is always always always a need for foster homes and adoptive families. The list of animals awaiting homes in Kansas City alone is more than 100,000, please don’t wait until there is a popular news story. Adopt an animal today. And if you’re in a financial situation that allows you to, make a donation to a shelter or rescue group.
Sarah Estlund, Kansas City Animal Advocacy Examiner