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The Ottawa Animal Advocate

The Value and Benefits of Adoption at the Ottawa Humane Society

A couple with their newly adopted cat

Introducing a new pet should be a fun and exciting time. But if you don't know what you're getting into, the result can be a lot of stress, both for you and your new pet. And when the human-animal bond doesn't get off to a good start, it's more likely the animal will not remain in your home.

Part of the value of an OHS adoption is our help to make sure you are prepared for your new furry (or feathered) family member. OHS adoption counsellors work with potential adopters to review their lifestyle and expectations of a new pet, to help them understand what that perfect match looks like, and then work to make that match possible.

On top of the benefit adoption counselling provides, all animals adopted from the OHS are health checked by veterinary technical staff prior to adoption, and a veterinarian will examine all animals requiring a diagnosis or prescription. Cats and dogs receive core vaccinations and are microchipped. Cats, dogs and rabbits are all sterilized prior to adoption.

On the behaviour side, dogs and cats at the OHS receive a behaviour assessment to help make the best possible match. Where an unknown behaviour issues surfaces after the animal is adopted, the OHS can provide post-adoption counselling to support adopters.

The OHS also sends all animals home with a health guarantee, pet insurance trial, retail store discount coupons as well as coupons from local veterinarians offering free or discounted services. The overall value of an OHS adoption averages well over a thousand dollars. The price to adopt from the OHS? A fraction of that cost.

At the OHS, success looks like a good, permanent match — unlike some sellers whose goal is profit or just to rehome the animal as fast as possible, with little to no consideration to its future. The OHS keeps every adoptable animal until it finds a permanent home — regardless of whether that takes a week, or over a year. And all of that work is done while continuing to provide excellent value to adopters.

Changing the Lives of Ottawa’s Animals on World Spay Day

Spay surgery being performed on a cat

On Feb. 25, the OHS celebrated World Spay Day by spaying/neutering 60 cats, dogs and one rabbit.

By 8 a.m., close to two dozen veterinarians, technicians veterinary assistants, and other staff and volunteers were hard at work helping homeless animals and strengthening bonds with our community partners to make a difference.

  • Most of the animals were spayed or neutered to help four OHS partner organizations.
  • 36 feral cats were spayed or neutered.
  • An additional 17 cats were sterilized at the OHS Mobile Spay/Neuter Clinic, providing this life-saving surgery to pet owners in Ottawa that may not have otherwise had access to this care.
This year's World Spay Day was a great reminder that, by working together, we can truly change the future for Ottawa's animals.

Share the importance of spaying and neutering pets!

Spaying and neutering pets is a crucial step every pet owner should take to help make sure unwanted pets aren't abandoned and left to fend for themselves; that's why every cat, dog and rabbit the OHS adopts is spayed or neutered. But as OHS supporters, you probably already know that — so how else can you help?

Make sure your friends and family have as well! Please visit the OHS spay/neuter page to share the importance of spaying and neutering pets with the people in your life. The few seconds it takes to share this message can save the lives of animals in our community.

The Challenge of Living around Coyotes

Coyote hunting in a snowy field

Coyotes are one of the most challenging animals to live around. They can be aggressive and dangerous towards humans when they're put in defensive spots, and are considered a top predator for cats or small dogs.

The unavoidable truth, though, is that living in a city means coyotes are probably nearby. Last month, the OHS attended a seminar on co-existing with coyotes hosted by the City of Ottawa. The presenter discussed why coyotes behave dangerously, how and where their territories are structured, the danger they pose to pets and ways to keep yourself — and your pets — safe from them.

The seminar is available here, but these were some key takeaways for pet owners:

  • Feeding coyotes (whether intentionally or by leaving pet food outside) will increase the likelihood of a dangerous human/pet-to-coyote conflict.
  • Coyotes will actively hunt cats that are outdoors for food, whereas they generally attacks dogs to eliminate competition.
  • February, April, November and December are peak months for coyote attacks on pets.
  • Cats should always be indoor pets.
  • Dogs should be kept on a leash when walking outdoors.
  • Either supervise your dog when he’s in your yard or use motion sensing lights and fencing to keep him in your yard and the coyotes out.
  • Report bold or aggressive coyotes in your area to by-law.

The best policy when you spot a coyote is always to avoid them. They are not pets, they will not interact positively with you and you will put yourself or your pet in danger by trying to get closer. The safest way to co-exist with coyotes is by staying away from them, so please do so for your pet's and your own safety.

Buddy & Belle: Lola

Lola with big sad eyes

Nine in dog years is about 56 in human years. It's no surprise that Lola felt a little bewildered when she arrived at the OHS: at her age, this sweet Dachshund should have been enjoying an early retirement in a comfy home, with lots of treats and lap cuddles. Instead, she found herself at the OHS on New Year's Eve, with nowhere else to go. Read Lola's story and make a donation to give her a second chance...

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Garden Party: Save the Date

Delicious plated cakes

Buy your tickets now for the 20th Annual OHS Garden Party on Wednesday, May 13. Ottawa's top chefs and mixologists will be taking over the Horticulture Building at Lansdowne Park to support Ottawa's animals through an evening of culinary masterworks.

It will be a delight for the senses, featuring tasty dishes, cocktails, fine wines and craft beer. This event will help support the more than 8,000 animals that the OHS cares for each year and honour the late Chef Kurt Waldele.

Read more or buy your early bird tickets now!

Events Calendar
The 20th Annual OHS Garden Party
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