HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) -- A Houston man is facing a felony charge for allegedly torturing and strangling a 3-week-old kitten to death.
According to the Houston SPCA, David Arias was arrested last weekend in northwest Houston by the Harris County Precinct 1 Constable's Office.
Arias has been charged with cruelty to non-livestock animals - a felony in the state of Texas.
According to authorities, the kitten had been buried in the backyard of a home in the 8700 block of Cherie Grove Circle after it was tortured and strangled to death.
"We know that about 60% of households experiencing domestic violence have children and pets in the home," said Jo Sullivan, a licensed social worker who also serves as the chief community and development officer at the Houston SPCA. "This type of animal abuse can easily escalate to people and domestic violence in the home."
Earlier this summer, the Houston SPCA told ABC13 it's taking a lot more calls lately for abandoned pets, and it wants to get the word out to stop this from happening. Hear more about it in our full report in the video above.
The group is also encouraging residents to report animal cruelty.
"We rely heavily on our community's eyes and ears to report animal cruelty," said Adam Reynolds, the chief animal cruelty investigator for the Houston SPCA. "It's critical that it's reported immediately, especially when it involves any degree of violence towards animals."