Showing newest 12 of 54 posts from August 2010. Show older posts
Showing newest 12 of 54 posts from August 2010. Show older posts

Monday, August 30, 2010

International Pets Looking For Homes

CRITTER CHATTER: Pets with international roots looking for homes in Toronto. This Dutch rabbit named Yoshi is looking for a new home.

This month we introduce Charlie, a handsome cocker spaniel who is looking for love and understanding, and Yoshi, a little rabbit who has a gentle nature.
Charlie is a three-year-old neutered male English Cocker Spaniel who is described as a loving, playful and obedient boy.
He enjoys going for walks, but does get excited and will pull on the leash so he will need some positive training work in that area. However, he's extremely food and treat motivated, which can be incorporated with his training.
Typical of the spaniel breed, his ears, eyes and skin will need to be cared for and maintained.
He enjoys the company of other dogs and has a number of canine buddies in his current foster home.
Charlie would benefit from an experienced adult-only home as he has a tendency to guard his treasured possessions. He is house trained, fully vetted and looking for his forever home through Project Pet Rescue.
If you are interested in knowing more about Charlie visit, email [email protected] or call Dora at 416-815-8787.
Yoshi is a three-year-old spayed female Dutch rabbit who is good natured and loves to explore.
As with all pet rabbits, you will need to bunny-proof her roaming area to ensure she can't injure herself or cause damage via chewing.
Rabbits are intelligent, social animals who can become delightful companion animals if given a chance to interact with their human families. A great resource site for rabbit care is
For more information about adopting Yoshi, email [email protected] visit or call Rob at 905-471-3811, ext. 200.
For those of you who might be interested in an autumn walk to benefit needy pets, here are two September walkathons that have been organized:
Sept. 12 is the annual Etobicoke Humane Society walk. Details are online at
Sept. 26 is the Walk for Rescue to be held in Scarborough. Visit

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Humane Society Reopens Kitten Nursery

Brace yourselves, cat lovers!
The Toronto Humane Society has re-opened its kitten nursery.
And as bright eyes glanced out from their cages Thursday - several raising tentative paws before crawling onto their mom to suckle - resistance was almost futile.
Only two litters were present.
“We’re taking in kittens on a limited basis,” executive director Garth Jerome said in the recently reopened, extensively renovated River St. shelter’s nursery.
Several litters were being fostered overnight, returning soon to be available for adoption. Vulnerable while young, “these kittens are far better off in homes than in cages,” where they could be exposed to ailments or disease, Jerome said. And fostering helps acclimatize them with people.
With the THS no longer affiliated with the Ontario Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, Jerome said for legal reasons, strays are not being accepted.
Strays once accounted for up to 85% of all cats at the shelter, he said. The OSPCA seized the shelter and had several executives arrested last November. All charges were dropped recently.
Under provincial regulations, “veterinarians need protection ... before we can take strays,” Jerome said. With a new board of directors and the shelter only recently re-opened, “there are also ownership concerns.”
Over the years, people launched lawsuits seeking the return of wandering pets taken to the shelter by well-meaning passersby, some by animal activists plus critics of owners leaving animals in back yards.
Problems also arose when people “scooped up a neighbour’s animal and brought it in, saying they had found it,” the cat or dog was adopted out before the owner tracked it down, or it was euthanized due to illness, Jerome said. “In some cases, an owner didn’t want to pay the bill for treatment.”
He said the THS is negotiating with Toronto Animal Services to allow foundlings to be taken to the shelter on a regular basis.
“We have a meeting in the first week of September, but for now queens with litters come from two cat rescue groups, so we don’t encounter issues of ownership,” Jerome said, adding TAS “have sent us a dog or two and some cats, so we’re very hopeful.”
Spayed or neutered around six weeks of age, as long as they weighing a healthy 700 grams, some kittens are returned to the rescuers for temporary fostering.
But with an inviting smile, Jerome said some newly-spayed or neutered juveniles “are made available right away.”

Dog Friendly Living In Toronto - From Our Guest Blogger Lindsay At The Hydrant!

Toronto: Dog Friendly Living

Toronto has a lot to offer to dedicated dog owners. Have you ever wondered what you can do with your dog in Toronto?

Try new things! Expose your dog to everything!

Not only does this provide you with the time to bond and connect with your pooch, many of these adventures can also be a considered a ‘brain’ day - Every dog needs and thrives with mental stimulation and challenges. Keeping your dog safe and under control will increase your awareness and connection with your dog.

One of the most common issues dog owners have is that they don't keep their dogs busy enough. When a dog gets bored, they get destructive and when a dog gets destructive, well, you know what happens!

Getting Around

Did you know the TTC allows dogs on the subway, buses & streetcars?

Leashed pets or pets secured in an enclosed container are welcome to travel on the TTC during weekday off-peak periods - that is before 6:30 am; 10:00 am to 3:30 pm; after 7:00 pm. Visit the TTC By-law, Section 3, for full details.

Plus, it’s free for your dog (finally, something that’s free!)

Let’s go Shopping!

Many downtown stores happily welcome dogs. Just double check before dragging Fido into the change room with you! All stores listed below have street-entrances. (No shopping mall/centres)

Lululemon Atheltica - Queen St W location
Davids’ Tea
Timothy’s Coffee - Located inside of PawsWay

Patio Party

Many Toronto patios make bringing your dog along easy & adaptable. Look for a sturdy fence to securely tie your pooch next to your table along with shade (umbrella, trees, etc) you can calmly enjoy your meal out, while keeping your best buddy close by. Look for patios that have dog bowls full of fresh water, strategically placed along the fence ..This is a tell tail sign that it’s a dog-friendly joint!

These are a few of my neighbourhood favourites:

- The Bier Markt - King St W
- Bar Wellington - Portland/Wellington
- The Rivoli - Queen St W
- The Black Bull - Queen St W

Find your own neighbourhood dog-friendly places. Don’t be scared to ask the staff if they’ll allow dogs - you’ll be surprised at how many do. Your dog will appreciate the training & challenge of seeing new things and experiencing most of the city, and so will you.

**Visit The Hydrant at

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Cesar Millan Brings Live Tour To Canada For The First Time

'Cesar Millan LIVE' to visit nine Canadian cities - tickets on sale August 30
TORONTOAug. 25 /CNW/ - Oprah Winfrey, Scarlett JohanssonWill Smith and Nicolas Cage have all had their dogs trained and balanced by TV sensation Cesar MillanCesar Millan has gained a dedicated following as host of his Emmy-nominated series 'Dog Whisperer', and now fans and dog lovers across Canada have an opportunity to witness Cesar Millan's talents first hand as he brings his enlightening and hugely entertaining live show to Canada for the first time. Presented by National Geographic Channel, 'Cesar Millan LIVE' will visit: Victoria (October 26), Vancouver (Oct. 27 & 28), Hamilton (Oct. 30), Toronto (Nov. 1), London (Nov. 2), Ottawa (Nov. 3), Montreal (Nov. 4), Edmonton (Nov. 6) and Calgary (Nov. 7).Cesar Millan will have audiences spellbound as he shares his amazing insights on dog psychology, and how people can inadvertently play a role in their dog's "behavioral issues".
Tickets for 'Cesar Millan LIVE' go on sale on Monday, August 30 at 10:00 a.m. (local time). Further ticket and tour information can be found at
With 'Cesar Millan LIVE', Cesar uses state-of-the-art multimedia accompanied by dogs and their owners to illustrate his unique concepts. During the first half of his live show, Cesar teaches the audience about how the everyday things we do in our homes, can grow into behavioral issues. He also offers invaluable tips and tools to help your dog be calm and balanced while at home. The second part of 'Cesar Millan LIVE' focuses on the dog park - Cesar demonstrates the importance of energy and leadership. Over the course of the show, Cesar will have audiences seeing the world through their dog's eyes and his "fulfillment formula" will change their relationships with their dogs forever.
"What amazing places dogs are taking me to," Cesar says. "If you had told me when I was growing up in Mexico, that one day I would be travelling the world with my own live show, I don't think I would have ever believed it. I rehabilitate dogs and train people, so to be given the chance to share my talents to help dog owners become calm and assertive pack leaders with their dogs really helps me fulfill my vision of making the world a better place… one dog at a time."
The all-new sixth season of Dog Whisperer premieres on Sunday, September 12 at 5pm ET / 2pm PT on National Geographic Channel. For more information, viewers can visit
'Cesar Millan LIVE'  Canadian Tour Dates & Venues:
  • Victoria, BC - October 26 - Save On Foods Memorial Centre
  • Vancouver, BC - October 27 - River Rock Casino Resort
  • Vancouver, BC - October 28 - Boulevard Casino's Red Robinson Show Theatre
  • Hamilton, ON - October 30 - Copps Coliseum
  • Toronto, ON - November 1 - Air Canada Centre
  • London, ON - November 2 - John Labatt Centre
  • Ottawa, ON - November 3 - Scotiabank Place
  • Montreal, PQ - November 4 - Bell Centre
  • Edmonton, AB - November 6 - Rexall Place
  • Calgary, AB - November 7 - Pengrowth Saddledome
Please noteCesar Millan Live is for people training, therefore no patron dogs are allowed at the venues - only approved service dogs are permitted.
Cesar Millan will be in Toronto on September 7 & 8 and will be available for interviews.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010


August 29 · 1:00pm - 2:30pm


Created By

More Info
This phenomenal workshop by international award winning Cassandra Hartman provides an opportunity to try two unique canine sports: Doggie DanceFit! & Its A Ball! For the first 45 minutes, students and their dogs can sample Doggie DanceFit! - or literally Dancing with Your Dog - where obedience moves are set to music. After a break, it's time for It's A Ball - Exercise, endurance, balance and core strength through exercise ball work for dogs. Both provide a great way to deepen the bond with your dog while having a lot of fun!

Cost: $45 plus HST.

(Note: Full Doggie DanceFit! classes and workshops will be held at PawsWay in the fall so this is great time to sample this fun, canine sport.)

Visit PawsWay in person to register, or email [email protected] or call 416 360-7297 for more details.

Dog Park Plans Unleashed In Scarborough

Pair of sites expected to open in September

Dog park plans unleashed in Scarborough. Willow, runs for a ball thrown by its owners in Toronto's Withrow Park off-leash dog area. Though other parts of Toronto have 43 off-leash dog parks, the first two in Scarborough are slated to open in September of 2010. File Photo/WILLIAM MEIJER
Off-leash dog parks are finally coming to Scarborough with two sites are approved and set to open in early September.
Scarborough Centre Councillor Michael Thompson said Botany Hill Park and Thomson Memorial Park will be the first two areas to embrace the off-leash runs many other parts of Toronto have had for years.
"We support the idea as long as there is a balance of safety for dog owners and dogs and other users of the park," said Thompson.
The two locations are a start, but some dog owners in Thompson's ward aren't satisfied with the plans.
The rest of Toronto boasts 43 off-leash parks, and local dog owner Richard Spiegelman wants more Scarborough locations put on the fast-track.
"We are tired of being criminalized because we want to take our dogs in a park," said Spiegelman. "We are taxpayers, we pay for the parks and we would like some access to those parks."
Since 1995, Spiegelman has been walking his border collie, Duchess, in Wexford Park. He has never had a problem when she is off leash, but knows of people who have been ticketed for what he sees as a citizen's right to enjoy public property.
"We are made the instant villains all the time. Dogs in the park are always seen as bad and we are tired of that," said Spiegelman.
He is trying to get the city to approve Wexford Park as another official off-leash zone. On Thompson's suggestion, he started the Ward 37 Dog Owners Association to get the community behind him. So far, 166 people have signed up but Spiegelman hasn't yet filled out an application with the city.
There are many factors to be taken into consideration before city staff can recommend a public park be designated as an off-leash area. This process can take months.
In an attempt to move his suggestion through the red tape a little quicker, Spiegelman unsuccessfully tried to set up a meeting with Brenda Patterson, general manager of the city's Parks, Forestry and Recreation division.
"It was decided that whether or not he spoke to the general manager wouldn't make much of a difference because it would have to be considered through staff who would deal with the issue anyway," said Thompson. "They key is that we ensure a process is in place so that each opportunity can be dealt with in such a way that all the interests of everyone are considered."
Thompson said he would like the park approval to move through at a quicker pace, but there are concerns from residents and potential sites need to be thoroughly examined. Though Thompson hasn't spoken with anyone who outright opposed the idea of dog parks in Scarborough, he did recently hear from a pair of constituents who suffered dog bites in public parks.
According to Spiegelman, incidents like that won't be addressed under current rules in most parks, which stipulate all dogs need to be leashed. In his experience, those rules are frequently broken and rarely enforced.
"If you go to any park, any time of day, there are dogs off leash already," said Spiegelman. "You have all these rules about dogs in parks and they don't work 99 per cent of the time. Let's work on making rules that do work for people using the parks."
The off-leash park in Botany Hill Park, 277 Orton Park Rd., is scheduled to open on Sept. 1 and the one in Thomson Memorial Park, at Brimley Road and Lawrence Avenue, should open soon after.

Time To Investigate OSPCA: Worthington

Few things highlight the differences between the “new” Toronto Humane Society and the OSPCA than their respective reactions to the Crown dropping all charges against former THS executives.
In a press release, THS president Michael Downey said they were “pleased that the Crown has decided to withdraw all charges,” adding that “public confidence must be rebuilt . . . the image of the society has been severely damaged . . . put this chapter behind us . . . .” All positive and hopeful.
Contrast that with the press conference held by the OSPCA. Holding a kitten in his arms, presumably to show his love for animals, OSPCA chairman Rob Godfrey said: “We are outraged by the Crown’s decision to drop all charges of animal cruelty, conspiracy and obstruction.”
Calling the withdrawal of charges “the whims of a lawyer,” and urging the attorney general to review the decision, Godfrey went on about “alleged animal abusers” answering to a court of law.” Churlish, mean spirited and puerile, the reaction tells you more about the OSPCA than the THS which, critics say, was being cruel by not euthanizing more animals. “Killing with kindness,” according to the Globe and Mail.
One shouldn’t blame Godfrey who is a figurehead guided by others. The OSPCA board is a closed shop; the membership has no vote.
While THS executives are cleared, how about Tre Smith — charged by the OSPCA with impersonating a peace officer after being suspended as an animal inspector?
His bete noire at OSPCA is its lead investigator Kevin Strooband, who led the attack on the THS last year, and whose own conduct has since been brought into question, including his relationship with a THS female employee who was a potential witness against the THS.
Tre Smith is something of hero to many who care about animals. On a blistering day in 2007 he smashed the window of a car to release a foaming rottweiler that was literally baking to death. The angry car owner confronted Smith who handcuffed him to the car while he called police and sought medical attention for the dog.
Passersby beat the dog-abuser, who eventually pleaded guilty to cruelty. Smith, who worked at the THS was subsequently suspended by the OSPCA.
Torontonians sided with Smith who became the face of the THS on TV programs.
He was reinstated, then suspended again.
Smith did not give up on animals, and continued to investigate on their behalf until the OSPCA went after him and alerted the media which photographed him being arrested in handcuffs. Smith’s rights were abused as were the rights of other defendants.
Some wonder at the double standard with Stroogand, who managed the THS raid and screwed up. MPPs Frank Klees (Tory) and Cheri DiNova (NDP) question the double-standard in treatment. Strooband, curiously is a member of the OSPCA’s board of directors, yet leads their investigations and can lay criminal charges.
It raises the question why a charity dependent of donations, has been given policing powers and is answerable to no one — not even its membership.
Tony Brown of the Ministry of Community and Correctional Services is on record saying there are no plans to investigate the OSPCA: “The ministry does not interfere.”
Well, the damn ministry should investigate and should interfere. It doesn’t take a Sherlock Holmes to find all sorts of complaints against the OSPCA for heavy-handedness and gouging money from people to get their animals back.

Monday, August 23, 2010

Our First Submissions For Photo Contest #2 - "Pets And Kids"!

*From top to bottom we have :

1. Julian & Astra
2. Julian & Zat
3. Quintin & Penelope

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Stop K9 Profiling Event Next Weekend!

Stop canine profiling in Ontario.
Photo: logo design by Kinga Zak
Animal advocacy group Stop K9 Profiling is inviting all dog lovers and concerned citizens to spend the day at Toronto's Coronation Park on Sunday, August 29, 2010.
Starting at noon, this exciting event will feature music, vendors, speeches, information booths, family activities, a canine agility course, prizes, and more -- all in support of Bill 60, a private member's bill introduced by MPP Cheri DiNovo, calling for the immediate removal of the breed-specific legislation (BSL) contained inOntario's Dog Owners'....

*To read more, visit

A Recent Toronto Sun Editorial On The OSPCA/THS.

Queen’s Park needs to restore dwindling public confidence over the care of lost, stray, injured, vulnerable and unwanted animals across Ontario. That’s the real issue buried beneath the war of attrition between the Ontario Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals and what’s left of the Toronto Humane Society.
Crown prosecutors recently dropped cruelty and conspiracy charges against former THS directors resulting from an ill-advised and badly-executed OSPCA-led raid on the Toronto shelter last November.
The Crown said the OSPCA committed so many Charter and other legal violations in the raid that saw THS directors handcuffed and paraded before the media, there was no hope of convictions. Proceeding with the charges would have brought the administration of justice into disrepute.
OSPCA Chairman Rob Godfrey responded by attacking the Crown’s decision, calling for Attorney General Chris Bentley to intervene. He said the Crown had ignored mountains of evidence gathered by the OSPCA in what he described as “the largest case of animal cruelty in the province.”
But spokesmen for Bentley said the government has no plans to review the decision to drop the charges, which was not done lightly.
Indeed, the Crown cited the history of animosity and legal fights between the OSPCA and THS in explaining its decision.
The problem is none of this is helping vulnerable animals and the public has no idea who to believe.
We believe the root problem lies in the OSPCA’s dual roles both as a charity and humane society, and as the policing agency for other humane societies.
The potential for conflict of interest — as indicated by the Crown’s decision to abandon the OSPCA-prompted charges against the THS — is enormous.
Enforcing animal care standards should be the job of an independent agency, regulated by government, with no competing role with other animal shelters.
Opposition MPPs have called for Premier Dalton McGuinty’s government to implement stronger oversight of the OSPCA, but the Liberals have balked.
The constant charges and counter-charges of wrongdoing between rival animal welfare organizations are undermining public confidence in the system, and, we fear, the quality of care for vulnerable animals.
It has to stop. The province has to stop it.

Friday, August 20, 2010

THS Donations Down 60%

August 20, 2010
Message From The THS Executive Director
Dear Friend of the Toronto Humane Society,
Donations are down almost 60% at the Toronto Humane Society. This, in effect, translates into millions of lost dollars for our organization. Our newly elected Board of Directors, management and staff are working hard to make this shelter a leader in animal welfare in North America.
Here are some examples of new initiatives implemented by the new Board of Directors, since their election in June 2010:
  • All animals are spayed and neutered before being placed in adoption. Some 180 animals have been spayed / neutered since June 28, 2010.
  • We have developed partnerships with local rescue groups like Toronto Cat Rescue and Annex Cat Rescue.
  • We have extended the hand of help to many shelters outside of Toronto to assist in transferring animals to our own facility, to ease over-crowding and unnecessary euthanasia.
  • New community committees have been established to make recommendations to the Board on matters such as Adoptions, Animal Welfare, Fundraising, Volunteers, Spay and Neuter and many more.
  • A consultation has been arranged with Mr. Bill Bruce from Calgary.
  • The Society will have a presence at the Anti-Breed Specific Legislation Rally.
  • A food bank has been implemented to offer community support for owners who wish to keep animals rather than surrender them to the shelter.
  • The Society has pledged its support to the Toronto Feral Cat Coalition and will become closely involved with the Trap-Neuter-Release program.
  • A process of ongoing review and changes to policies and procedures at the Society to ensure that standards are maintained and improved.
The Society is committed to change but we urgently need you help and support. All donations in excess of $ 20.00 receive a charitable tax receipt. If you wish to donate to the THS, please call the shelter on 416-392-2273 or go to our online fundraising tools at
The Society would like to thank all our past, current and future donors for their ongoing commitment to the many animals that need help.

Pets Are Good For Kids

For years, parents have known that pets and children are a good combination. Now, research is demonstrating that children can benefit from animal companionship.
Children with companion animals are more likely to have higher self-esteem. A US study of 394 university students revealed that those who had owned dogs or cats as childhood pets were more self-confident than those who did not.
Pets are a wonderful stress buster for kids. One study revealed that children who had a dog present during their physical examinations had lower heart rates, reduced blood pressure and less behavioural distress than when the dog was not present.
Pets are wonderful playmates and sympathetic listeners. They also stimulate communication skills in children. A study of 455 school children between the ages of 11 and 16 revealed that children with pets had a better ability to understand non-verbal communications.
Pet ownership is an excellent way to teach children about responsibility. Pets require a great deal of attention, guidance and care. In return for feeding, grooming and exercising their pets, children obtain companionship and unconditional love.
Pets make wonderful, loving companions that offer unconditional love. Consider adding a pet to your household. Your veterinarian can help you research the best pet for your family.