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The Ottawa Animal Advocate

The Dark Side of that Puppy You Just Bought

Golden Retriever Puppy

In Canada, the increased demand for puppies is fueling international importation, largely unenforced by government, and is leading to the death and suffering of animals during transport or in their country of origin.

But, international importation is just one aspect of this issue. There are plenty of people in Canada happy to make money off of overbreeding dogs in nasty conditions. Stories of hopeful pet parents putting hundreds of dollars down for a puppy they saw online that doesn't even exist pop up frequently in the news. The huge demand also creates an opportunity for people saddled with a poorly bred pet to recoup some of the thousands they paid and dodge the first big vet bill by selling her to an eager buyer.

Caveat Emptor: buyer beware is the hallmark of protecting oneself. The desire to have furry friend is strong, but the desire for an immediate companion can lead to more suffering for animals and their future owners.

The OHS has tools and information to help pet buyers make responsible decisions while shopping for their new best friend. Whether considering purchasing from a breeder or purchasing a pet advertised online, the advice may save a buyer heartbreak and prevent the future suffering of many animals.

Please don't let yourself or others be taken in. Fight back against the suffering and death of animals and help others do the same.

Standing Against the Abusive Exotic Animal Trade

Sick Parrot

The OHS is joining in a call to the federal government to stop the domestic and international trade of exotic animals in Canada. The Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) confirmed that in December 2020, a shipment of more than 50 exotic birds from Guyana that should not have been allowed in Canada passed through Vancouver International Airport en route to Japan.

One bird was dead and the others were kept in deplorable conditions with insufficient food and water.

Like the dead puppies from Ukraine that arrived at Toronto's Pearson Airport last summer, the CFIA's response to the abused exotic birds was toothless. CFIA issued an order to remove which simply meant the animals needed to leave Canada.

The European Union and the United States have already banned the import of wild-caught birds, but Canada has fallen behind on these protections, allowing unscrupulous businesses to use our airports as trade routes for exotic animals.

Canada needs to take a stand against these cruel, international practices and no longer be complicit in a dark trade that harms and kills innocent creatures for the sake of profit. Supposed restrictions need to be tightened and properly enforced, because as the dust settles and fingers are pointed, there are still abused or even dead animals landing in Canadian airports and thousands, if not millions of dollars flowing into businesses that have no intention of stopping their inhumane practice.

A petition for the federal government to ban exotic wildlife trade in Canada is currently underway. Please take a moment to sign the e-3015 petition and write to your MP to let them know it's unacceptable to allow these cruel trades to continue.

World Spay Day 2021

Sick Kitten Litter

February is spay/neuter awareness month, and 2021 marks the OHS's fifth year participating in World Spay Day. On Feb. 23, to meet pandemic safety precautions, there will be a slightly smaller group than in years past, but this mighty team will aim to spay/neuter a combined total of more than 40 cats, dogs and rabbits currently in the care of local partners. Help celebrate by raising awareness for spay/neutering benefits and dispelling some of the common myths that prevent pet owners from having their pet sterilized.

Here are a few spay/neuter facts to combat common spay/neuter myths:

Myth: It's not natural to spay/neuter and it's unhealthy for pets.

Fact: Neutering prevents cancer and other medical problems and spaying helps prevent uterine infections and cancers. Spaying or neutering will help your companion live a longer, healthier life.

Myth: My pet needs to have a litter/one heat before sterilization.

Fact: Medical evidence indicates just the opposite. The evidence shows that females spayed before their first heat are typically healthier.

Myth: Neutering will make my male dog/cat less of a male.

Fact: Pets do not have any concept of sexual identity, gender or ego. Neutering will not change a pet's basic personality nor experience any kind of emotional reaction or identity crisis when neutered.

Myth: My pet will gain weight and become lazy.

Fact: Overfeeding and lack of exercise are the leading cause of pet obesity, not sterilization.

Currently, with the increased demand for puppies and kittens, finding homes for all of a pet's litter may not be challenging, but doing so means fewer homes for all the dogs and cats in shelters. Overpopulation is a problem perpetuated by each new litter.

Spay/neuter is the most responsible decision an owner can make for their pet. Not only does it help the pet live a happier, healthier life, but it will save the lives of many others as well.

To help recognize February's cause, consider sharing these facts, becoming an OHS PAW monthly donor or supporting World Spay Day at the OHS on Feb. 23.

Buddy & Belle: Pekoe

Buddy and Belle

When Pekoe arrived at the Ottawa Humane Society, it was clear from her plaintive cries that she was suffering terribly. Pekoe's sad meows, limping gait and wounded, bleeding tail pointed to one thing: she needed urgent medical treatment.

Read Pekoe's story and have your donation TRIPLED to help her and other injured animals!

Thank you to our sponsors:
Science Diet
Ottawa Citizen
Ottawa Humane Society
245 West Hunt Club Rd, Ottawa, ON K2E 1A6 |


Ottawa Humane Society

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