The Cape of Good Hope SPCA is investigating a Stellenbosch man after he was pictured holding a cat by the scruff of its neck, apparently ready to stab it with a knife he was holding in his other hand.
Jaydon Faans, a 21-year-old self-described Facebook comedian with 180 000 followers, posted a picture of himself with George, his nephew’s tabby cat.
The image sparked controversy on Facebook, and the SPCA became aware of it.
Spokesperson Belinda Abraham claimed that Faans is guilty of animal abuse and should come forward.
“If he is truly remorseful, he should do the right thing and come forward to the SPCA so he can be held accountable for his actions,” Abraham said.
She added that if the SPCA decides to take legal action against Faans, the organisation will let the courts decide how to punish him.
“Should we decide to open a case against Mr Faans, he can make his apology to a magistrate and the magistrate can decide if this is acceptable,” Abraham said.
If found guilty of contravening the Animals Protection Act No.71 of 1962, an individual faces up to 12 months in the mang or a fine of R40 000.
However, when the Daily Voice spoke to Faans, he claimed that he took the picture as a joke in order to make a Facebook meme.
“I’m a Facebook comedian, all I ever wanted to do was to create a joke for people to react and share laughter together,” he explained.
Faans insists that he is an animal lover and had no intention of harming George.
“I love animals, I want to take the time to apologise to those who found it offensive and hurtful. I have been getting hurtful messages and hatred towards me,” he said
But, Abraham hit back: “Mr Faans also clearly needs to be educated on the fact that cruelty to animals is not funny and that pet ownership does not give anyone the right to exploit or harm them for the purposes of entertainment.”
Faans confirmed the SPCA has reached out to him but he doesn’t understand the fuss.
“They called me. I was afraid because I didn’t understand anything at that moment, I was just trying to make a meme,” he said.