An inquiry into childhood cruelty towards animals: characteristic for stage of life or a symptom of psychopathology

Project Details


The aim of this project is to develop a wide and complete classification of animal abuse commited by children of a non-clinical population.
Animal abuse is a phenomenon that occurs in all cultures, is commited by people of all ages, even children, and has existed throughout history. It is known that this social problem appears frequently, however data on prevalence and incidents are not yet available. It is not clear what animal abuse exactly covers, which behavior can and cannot be considered as agression against animals,...
Althrough cruelty towards animals occurs frequently, research in this domain, is nearly non-existent. Whitin the few inquiries available it is impossible to find a univocal definition and a clear description of this phenomenon. The research field on childhood cruelty towards animals can be said to be nearly untouched. The only research done on this topic concerns clinical populations, whose agressive behavior is a symptom of the pathology itself.
Effective start/end date1/01/0231/12/03


  • Social psychology
  • Psychopathology of children an adolescen
  • Criminology
  • Agression
  • Psychopathology of children
  • agression
  • Developmental psychology

Flemish discipline codes

  • Psychology and cognitive sciences
  • Law and legal studies