The Role of Veterinary Forensics in Animal Cruelty Investigations

Veterinary forensics is a developing field that can assist with animal cruelty investigations. Animal abuse investigations are vital because animal maltreatment is a co-occurring and central aspect of interpersonal violence. Animal care professionals, such as veterinarians, animal control officers, and humane law enforcement all have roles to play in the prevention, identification, and treatment of interpersonal violence. The co-occurrence of child abuse and domestic violence with animal abuse, and the significance of childhood animal abuse means that animal welfare overlaps with both family welfare and public safety. Veterinarians with training in veterinary forensics can be especially valuable to animal cruelty investigations.