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A Chinese man has killed seven newborn puppies by smashing their heads to the ground while a young woman decapitated a kitten and posted the bloody pictures on the internet, sparking an outrage among netizens.
An online post shows that a feeder, identified as Feng, at a dog shelter in China's eastern Zhejiang province killed seven newborn puppies in front of the mother dog.
Photos showed the middle-aged man smashing the puppies one by one against a marble step while their mom, a ginger-haired dog, watched helplessly from a cage.
The incident created revulsion among the netizens who denounced the horrific cruelty.
Feng has been removed from his post, state-run China News Service reported.
The mother dog is still at the shelter, but it will be put to sleep in a few days as it was abandoned by its owner.
Most netizens said the shelter should have been a refuge for stray dogs, but it became more of a slaughter center. And some said as a shelter, it should treat dogs ethically and humanely.
In another ghastly internet visual, Li Pingping, a former marketing consultant in Guangdong province beheaded a kitten in her bathroom on Friday, less than two weeks after she purchased it.
Li posted the pictures of the dismembered cat that night on Sina Weibo, China's version of Twitter.
As the photos went viral, netizens unleashed a flurry of comments decrying the brutal act, with many calling the woman "insane" and "out of her mind", the report said.
Amid the flood of verbal attacks, the woman said she took her anger out on the cat because her family had been destroyed by her father's extramarital affair.
She told people to "back off" and stop judging her, which fuelled even more online resentment. Li later deleted her posts.
As pressure from the public mounted, Li also apologised in an open letter on Monday in which she said she abused the cat under the influence of alcohol and domestic misfortune, and that she has been living in fear and guilt over the past few days. The letter drew more than 60,000 comments by Tuesday.
The incidents of animal brutality in recent weeks have shocked people in China. In April, around 100 stray dogs were buried alive in a pit near a garbage dump in Alxa Left Banner, the Inner Mongolia autonomous region.
In May 2013, dozens of stray cats were slaughtered in a residential district in Beijing, with the fur of the animals almost completely ripped off.
Sun Daqiang, a professor of psychology at Beijing Normal University, said people abuse animals because they are unable to find a proper outlet for their suppressed emotions.
He said they tend to vent their feelings by attacking things that appear to be weaker than humans, such as cats and dogs.