Rescue group offering $1,500 for info on kitten attack

Ian Thibodeau
The Detroit News

The Detroit Dog Rescue is offering a $1,500 reward for information leading to the arrest of a man who encouraged his dogs to kill a kitten on Detroit’s northeast side.

The attack was caught on video and shared with Detroit Dog Rescue executive director Kristina Rinaldi, who said it was horrific.

“This is animal cruelty on so many levels,” she said. “These are the type of people we don’t want in the city of Detroit.”

Rinaldi said she only saw half of the video, which showed a man setting two dogs on a kitten. The man pointed to the kitten and poked it with a stick, she said, before one of his dogs grabbed it and “basically tears the cat apart.”

She was told that part of the video she didn’t see showed the dogs going after the kitten’s mother, which was able to escape the dogs.

The attack is troubling, Rinaldi said, because dogs trained to attack other animals will become aggressive toward humans and other dogs. And a person who would train dogs to attack a defenseless kitten is a danger to the city, too, she said.

“We can’t keep tolerating this kind of behavior in the city of Detroit,” she said. “We can’t have vicious animals in Detroit.

“(And) animal cruelty leads to the abuse of other humans.”

Rinaldi said the dogs’ breed doesn’t matter. Any dog, if trained by an irresponsible owner, will attack other animals.

She’s seen countless videos of dogs fighting each other and animal abuse, but the footage of the kitten attack, which happened earlier in August, is scary because it left a young, helpless animal dead.

“When you see somebody preying on something as defenseless as a kitten, that’s disturbing,” she said. “This is cruelty.”

The Detroit Police Department said Wednesday no one had filed a police report for the incident.

In Michigan, an animal cruelty conviction can result in imprisonment, fines, community service and possible psychiatric evaluation.

Anyone with information about the attack is asked to call the Detroit Dog Rescue at 313-458-8014 or the Detroit Police Department.

(313) 222-2359

Twitter: @Ian_Thibodeau