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Pennsylvania Woman Sentenced to Six Months for Creating “Gothic Kittens”

Tuesday, April 20, 2010 - 2:00pm

"Gothic Kitty" creator Holly Crawford has been sentenced to six months of house arrest for using a 14-gauge needle to pierce the ears, necks and tails of three kittens and then attempting to sell the maimed felines over the Internet. The 35-year-old Pennsylvania woman was further ordered to close her dog grooming business for at least two years. Despite opposition from concerned citizens, the judge ruled in favor of allowing Crawford to maintain guardianship over her other pets, including a dog, three cats and three snakes.

Crawford was initially charged after a tip led humane investigators and the state police to her home on December 17, 2008. Investigators found and seized three kittens wearing heavy piercing jewelry on their ears, necks and tails. At least one of the kittens had a thick elastic band wrapped around his tail to prevent blood flow, as a means of docking it.

Despite arguments that Crawford used sterile needles and surgical soap when piercing the kittens, a Luzerne County jury found her guilty of animal cruelty. Helping to seal the conviction was expert testimony from the ASPCA's leading forensics veterinarian, Dr. Melinda Merck, who testified that the kittens had been maimed and disfigured, had their hearing damaged, and could have died.

"I was very happy to work with the Luzerne County District Attorney's Office on this case of abuse," says Dr. Merck. "The idea of mutilating animals in such a way for profit is appalling, I am glad justice was served."

If you know of an animal who is being hurt, please report it. To report animal cruelty in New York City, call the ASPCA's tip line at (877) THE-ASPCA. Visit our Report Cruelty FAQ to learn how to report cruelty elsewhere.

Comments

Comments

Holly D

As human being I chose to have my ears pierced and even I find that at the end of the day it feels great to take my earrings out and I dont wear especially large jewelry nor do I have ears that are now being forced out of their natural position as with the kitten pictured above. Nevermind the initial distress and lack of choice involved. As for the counter argument above re de-clawing, tail or ear docking - two wrongs don't make a right. What possible benefit is there for piercing pets other than the entertainment of the humans invloved? Please find another way to get your entertainment that dosent involve mutilating animals.

Bryonie

I CHOSE to pierce my ears, I CHOSE to have my tattoos, I CHOSE to pierce my nose, because I have the ability to CHOOSE. Just because some stupid sicko decided her kittens would look cute with piercings, or trendy or whatever reason doesnt mean that she has the right to inflict her way of life on an innocent kitten. It has no voice it cannot say no, and I for one believe that the stupid idiot who allowed her to still keep her animals after what she did, should maybe have himself pierced, and stick an elastic band around his bits to dock him and see how long he lasts with the pain!
Stupid Law, Stupid woman and I really hope that one day society can wake up and admit it was wrong with what we do and how we treat animals on the planet!!!

Worse than this

Kittens and puppies are cute and people feel more emotional about the cuter animals they know and live with.This is a cruel practice - so is docking puppies tails.
Far worse though, is the everyday, accepted treatment of animals we eat. Because we don't know them or live with them like puppies and kittens, we don't think about them much. I lived on my dads farm for 21 years and I have seen some terrible things that are done all the time. The calves get huge chunks taken out of their ears, tails and horns cut off - you ought to see the blood spurt out of those horns - like getting a limb cut off.

I am not a vegetarian but the country has become so greedy for meat and we eat far too much of it. We eat so much meat, farmers can't grow enough cows, sheep and chickens for slaughter.

If you love animals, start thinking about the ones you eat - they have feelings too but people just don't care about them because they never get up close to see how intelligent they are.

teresa

THERE PETS NOT FASHION ACCESSORIES THERE MADE IN PERFECTION ALREADY NO NEED TO DECORATE THEM PEOPLE WHO DO SHOULD BE BANNED FROM HAVING PETS .

Jeff

Upside down again!!!! Here we are putting a woman in jail for doing to kittens what many women do to their young girl children. No one cares about that!! Well of course not. The human babies can be killed prior to birth so who cares if they are mutilated with peircings before and age where they can consent.

josie k

It's one thing to pierce a cats ears with a small stud but to do surface piercings, or severe body modifications like putting extreme weight on the ears to stretch them or removing body parts like ears, tails, toes, paws...is freaking RETARDED!!! What is wrong with people?! What's next? People going to go and split their dogs penis' or do a body suspension??? I hope anyone that does this, one day, ends up passing away alone at home and that Mew Mew and Charlie get hungry.

eric

and we only eat dogs, cats and rats in Vietnam!!!! lol

Debby

So many caring people are all writing about caring for animals!
Did you ever go to the ZOO?? It's all in the name of science but if you think about it, it's MAN with HIS power over the animal. Not an animal there can be "happy" out of his natural environment.
So too spaying, neutering an animal-even tho it's of course cleaner & easier & medically accepted practice,this procedure must hurt, it is surgery and we do it for OUR convenience- so that the animal doesn't get pregnant and messy and too much to handle. Yes-it's more socially accepted but ALL these man-applied procedures upon animals are CRUEL. We've had hamsters,puppies, parakeets, cuckatoos-and with each we did our best to teach our children how to care and treat them well.Animals are not TOYS, but PET stores sell them as toys(did the store ever inquire whther these people buying the animal will care for it after the excitement is over? what WILL happen to that animal??) It's a thin line between knowing how to really care properly for an animal. Thank you all for being caring. WE ALSO HAVE TO PROTECT OURSELVES AND OUR CHILDREN FROM OTHERS- ELIMINATE CRUELTY IN THE WORLD!!!

azzythehillbilly

The white man is very concerned about the health happiness and safety of their pet cats. Wow.
I would have thought they are angels except when I see what they do in Iraq Afghanistan. and countless other places.

letmeeatcake

i was very supportive of my dog, who convinced me he was really a cat...emotionally...inside...so after a few cosmetic surgeries, and some hormone treatments...

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