From ANIMAL PEOPLE, October 1999:
ANIMAL PEOPLE, as part of our ongoing effort to help solve animal protection
problems by accurately defining them, has since 1992 been tabulating all the data we can get
about cruelty cases to develop species-specific, method-specific, and motive-specific composite
portraits of the typical offender.
Not surprisingly, the psychological pathologies inflicted on different species tend to
vary according to whatever the animals most often symbolize. Among our findings, reported
and updated from time to time in greater detail:
• Men who harm women may also harm dogs, but tend to hurt cats with a particular
passion. Serial killers of women are frequently also serial cat-killers.
• Men who serially kill other men may kill cats, but more often serially kill dogs.
• Overt violence is overwhelmingly a male proclivity, but passive/aggressive abuse,
exemplified by dog-and-cat hoarding, child-starving, and starving farm animals, may be
practiced by either gender, as a symptom of chronic depression. The victims tend to be any
beings who are at the mercy of the offender. Depressive behavior, including hoarding, tends
to come earlier in life for men, coinciding with financial reverses, and later for women, coinciding
with bereavement, but the full syndrome can occur in either gender at any age.