No animal abuse charges for woman seen ‘boxing’ her dog in controversial Snapchat video

Everybody loves posting photos and videos of their pets online. Who doesn’t like seeing some cute cats and dogs on their social media?

But sometimes, things can turn ugly: these sites can reveal animal abuse even among internet celebrities, and people intentionally harming their pets as a “prank.”

The latest such controversy prompted an investigation by a humane society.

A bizarre video uploaded to Snapchat, originating from Treasure Valley, Idaho, shows a woman “boxing” her dog, punching him across the head with boxing gloves.

As she hits the dog, two friends seem to enjoy the scene and make light of the abuse.

“We’re boxing animals. Where’s Sarah McLachlan?” a man says, referencing her SPCA commercials.

It’s clear the woman isn’t holding back: the dog is knocked back from the hit, and yelps in distress.

The “boxer” begins to say “I hit him so hard…” before the video trails off.

You can see the video below, but viewer discretion is advised. Also note that this is a re-upload, not the original user’s video.

Naturally viewers were horrified, wondering how anyone would think this was okay to do.

The original poster has now set her account to private. According to TooFab, a follower apparently reached out to the boxing woman, who defended herself via text:

“He plays hard. A girl gunna hit him a little bit and you guys wanna press some girl hitting him with gloves,” she allegedly wrote.

“Never got hurt and was playing the entire time. I’d never let my dog get hurt.”

But an animal cruelty investigation soon began: The Idaho Humane Society announced they were taking action.

“We started an official investigation as a result of this video,” they wrote on Facebook. “This morning the individual was identified and we sent a Humane Officer to discuss the situation.”

“The investigation is currently pending review at the local prosecutor’s office for a charging decision.” The woman could potentially be cited under the “Beating and Harassing Animals” statute.

UPDATE 8/20:

Following the investigation, the City of Boise and the Idaho Humane Society have declined to press animal cruelty charges, after their investigation found insufficient evidence.

“The City declined charges due to insufficient evidence to prosecute under relevant state and city code,” the City of Boise said in a statement, according to KTVB.

“We have an ethical obligation to not proceed on cases where there is insufficient evidence to meet the burden of proof.”

A medical investigation by the Idaho Humane Society after the incident also did not find sufficient evidence of abuse, but still urged members of the public to come forward with cases like this.

“Idaho is one of the worst states in the U.S with regards to animal protection laws,” they said in a press release. “We urge the public to write their local city councilmembers and Idaho State Legislators to enact laws which better protect companion animals.”

While this woman wasn’t charged with abuse, many people are still deeply upset about the video. We can only hope he is safe and this owner will stop “boxing” her dog after all this controversy.

Remember to treat your dogs well, and call out any harm you witness on social media! Share this news!