This article addresses the challenges of defining and assessing animal abuse, the relation between animal abuse and childhood mental health, the extensive research on animal abuse and intimate partner violence, and the implication of these empirical findings for programs to enhance human and animal welfare. Highlighted are recent developments and advances in research and policy issues on animal abuse. The reader is directed to existing reviews of research and areas of focus on the expanding horizon of empirical analyses and programmatic innovations addressing animal abuse. Following a discussion of forensic and veterinary issues related to animal abuse, we discuss policy issues including how the status of animals as human companions at times may place animals at risk. We also review developments in the field of human–animal relations and apply the primary– secondary–tertiary prevention public health model to prevention and treatment of animal abuse. We close with a description of community networks addressing animal abuse, interagency collaborations, and new developments in animal-related law.
Ascione, F. R., & Shapiro, K. (2009). People and animals, kindness and cruelty: Research directions and policy implications. Journal of Social Issues, 65(3), 569-587.