Costa Rica’s Fight against Animal Abuse

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Today we live, constantly in a climate of insecurity and uncertainty. Violence is expressed in related ways. Every day we are shaken by dramatic events that concern us and move us.

Animal abuse is both a factor that predisposes to social violence and at the same time a consequence of it. It is part of the cascade of violence that reaches us all as an individual and as a society.

Violence is an intentional act that can be unique or recurring and cyclical, aimed at dominating, controlling or hurting others. It is almost always exercised by people of greater hierarchy, that is, those who have power in a relationship but can also be exercised on objects, animals or against themselves.

Violence inhibits the development of people and can cause irreversible damage, adopts different forms of expression that can vary from a verbal offense to homicide. Cruelty is an emotional response of indifference or obtaining pleasure in the suffering or pain of others or the action that unnecessarily causes such suffering, and is considered a psychological disturbance. The cruelty to children or animals is a clinical sign related to serious antisocial disorders.

Animal abuse.

Animal abuse includes behaviors that cause unnecessary pain or stress to the animal as well as torturing or depriving it of food. They range from negligence in basic care to direct torture, mutilation or intentional death of an animal.

The abandonment of animals, keeping them in inadequate facilities based on their habits, neglecting their hygiene, not providing them with adequate food, necessary for their development, life and maintenance of their health, or providing them with contaminated food or in poor conditions, hitting, hurting or mutilating them, are all part of animal abuse.

Types of animal abuse.


It consists of a fight between two roosters of the same gender or race. This practice has its origin in Asia and was taken to America by the Spanish and Portuguese Conquistadors.

It is considered by some to be a traditional sport or hobby, while animal advocates classify it as an act of cruelty to animals. Detractors argue that the fight causes suffering to these animals and even the wounds they suffer cause death. Despite this, it is still legal in several Latin American countries.


This practice, described as animal abuse was born in Spain in the twelfth century and has expanded around the world. The tradition focuses on torturing and then causing death to the bull for pure spectacle. It is not only considered mistreatment in the arena but also before the bullfighting.

The traffic of exotic animals.

This illegal trade is the third most lucrative mafia in the world and is considered one of the main causes of the decline in biodiversity that severely affects ecosystems in the world. Not only live animals are trafficked, but also carcasses or dissected animals and their meat, skins, and eggs are traded. The skins and tusks of exotic species are the most demanded.

Latin American countries are beginning to take legal action against animal abuse.

Such is the case in our country, Costa Rica, which allowed a dog that suffered animal abuse to attend a trial for abuse against its former owner. Our country has made history by being the first in Latin America in terms of animal rights.

According to a report in the case of the abused dog, the animal remained tied to a leash that slashed skin and flesh from its neck each time the dog moved. Now its current owners claim justice for his new friend. For its part, the judge has dismissed the charges by not being able to determine who exactly the person who tied the animal was.

The protection of animals, especially domestic animals, has become a social claim that increasingly receives political recognition in our country, the defense of cats, dogs, roosters, and many other species has reached the highest level of attention. It is increasingly understood that pets are a responsibility, not a toy, and therefore we must take care of them with due diligence.

Abandonment can be considered mistreatment if we consider that in the street, highway, vacant land and/or enclosed, animals cannot provide for themselves with food, water, shelter and protection of their health.  Abandoned, without any assistance, domestic animals are exposed to all kinds of aggression and violence, such as poisonings, abuses, and death.

Respecting the life of an animal is a fundamental value. This aspect is understood and will be defended by the laws and legislation of our country to provide more real protection of all animals. Remember they are also part of the construction of the country we all dream of.

SOURCEYohander Rodriguez
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