Animal welfare group boosts anti-cruelty efforts

A national animal welfare group has donated $50,000 to a University of Missouri training academy to help rural law enforcement investigators attend anti-cruelty workshops.

The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals says the donation will cover nearly 170 partial scholarships for classes offered by the university extension office's Law Enforcement Training Institute. The scholarships are also available for animal shelter employees and veterinarians.

The four-week anti-cruelty classes are held in Columbia as well as cities in 12 other states. They focus on topics such as dog fighting rings and unlicensed breeders.