By Amy Feldman

By Amy E. Feldman

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – Animal control officers rescued over 200 rats from an owner in Cleveland who bred them until he was evicted from his apartment. The Humane Society isn’t filing animal cruelty charges because the rodents were well fed when the owner reached out for help. It’s now reaching out to rat rescue organizations and is looking for adoptive homes for the rats. The evicted owner is on his own.

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One would think that one call to an exterminator would take care of the too many rats problem.

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How could someone even possibly face animal cruelty charges if there’s nothing illegal about killing the animal?

The crime of animal cruelty is about the mental process of the human being and the suffering of the animal.

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The mental process of hunting for meat or even for sport is not the same as enjoying the torturing of an animal, and while the ultimate result may be the death of the animal, the suffering during the process is one animal control officers and the law take seriously, regardless of whether the animal is considered by most people to be a pet, a a pest, or a platter.