Thursday, September 16, 2010

Another Entry In The "Pets And Kids" Photo Contest!

Tyler & Oak

Another Entry In The "Pets And Kids" Photo Contest!

Lily & Boo

Minister Refuses to Support Reform of OSPCA

(Queen’s Park) Newmarket-Aurora MPP, Frank Klees called on the newly-appointed Minister of Community Safety, Jim Bradley, to support a resolution before the Legislature that would reform the OSPCA.

Klees tabled the resolution that calls on the government to review the powers and authority of the OSPCA and to make the necessary changes to bring those powers under the authority of the Minister of Community Safety.

Klees pointed to events in early May of this year at the OSPCA's Newmarket shelter when 102 animals were killed unnecessarily to deal with an outbreak of ringworm. At the time, Klees called on the minister to intervene, but he claimed he had no authority to do so.

Since then, literally thousands of petitions have been signed in support of the resolution which will come to a vote on November 18th,  and there have been literally hundreds of complaints registered against the organization that range from gross mismanagement and incompetency to abuse of power.

"OSPCA agents are endowed with police powers and are authorized to lay criminal charges," said Klees, "But they receive less training than shopping centre security guards. That’s unacceptable.”

"Why will the minister not admit that the current legislation is flawed and agree to consult stakeholders on how best to achieve provincial oversight of animal welfare services in this province?"  Klees asked.

Transcript of the exchange is attached and the video can be viewed at:

Royal York Residents Host Huge Yard Sale To Rescue Feral Cats

Royal York residents host huge yard sale to rescue feral cats. Sue Coules, right, Jackie Gilmore, and Joan Romanik have organized a community yard sale that will take place this weekend to raise money to help provide veterinary services for stray cats living in their neighbourhood. Both Romanik's cat Jacky and Coules' cat Kasha were strays that they adopted. Staff photo/NICK PERRY
A group of Royal York South residents are banding together with local rescue groups this weekend to help save close to 50 feral cats and kittens who have taken up residence in their neighbourhood.
Susan Coules, an Uno Drive resident and volunteer with Helping Homeless Pets, will host a huge yard sale this Saturday, Sept. 18 (rain date Saturday, Sept. 25) at her home to raise funds to spay/neuter the cats, as well as to get them the urgent medical care they need.
"It's heartbreaking to see them - some of the cats have ear mites so bad, they're almost scratching their ears off," she said, noting that the majority of the cats are living under sheds and garages in backyards within six blocks of each other.
"It's terrible the horror stories I'm hearing from my neighbours: kittens dying in the snow last year; cats being eaten by coyotes; others walking around with open wounds because they're fighting, because they're not neutered...we knew we had to do something."
With funds raised from the sale, which will be held at 63 Uno Dr., Coules said Helping Homeless Pets, along with Toronto Pet Rescue and Action Volunteers for Animals will have the cats professionally caught, then divvy them up amongst themselves according to the space available at each rescue. Once safe at their respective rescues, the cats will be spayed or neutered and treated for their medical ailments by local veterinarians.
The kittens will then be fostered and adopted out, while the adult cats, if unadoptable, will be released back to their colony and continually monitored.
If successful in their rescue mission, Helping Homeless Pets is hoping to use the Royal York method as a model for other neighbourhoods dealing with the same overpopulation problems, Coules said.
"It's unbelievable, the cat explosion in GTA right now - it's actually a crisis," she said. "What we'd like to show is that if you come together as a community, you can accomplish a lot. If neighbourhoods will accept responsibility for the cats, it doesn't have to fall all on one person. There's a lot of help out there if you just know where to look."
Anyone wishing to help is encouraged to donate items to sale. Helping Homeless Pets is also looking for foster and permanent homes for cats. Monetary donations to the organization are accepted, with tax receipts for donations $25 and over. Go to for more information.

Provincial Government Refuses To Address The OSPCA Problem

As of today, several MPPs have risen at Queen's Park to read several of the THOUSANDS of petitions that they received over the summer from their constituents calling for provincial oversight of the Ontario Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (OSPCA). Such sentiments began back in May, when the OSPCA declared that there was an outbreak of a very VIRULENT strain of ringworm at its Newmarket shelter, and as a result the shelter staff had to euthanize more than 100 animals. What began as public outrage (there is a facebook group of over 35 000 members that can be found here) toward the OSPCA has recently turned into criticism of the current provincial government, which at present has shown little interest in responding to the current crisis. In fact, today in the legislature the current Minister of Community and Correctional Services, the Honorable James Bradley (pictured above), expressed his opinion that the province's stance on animal cruelty is quite adequate, and that he felt that tax paying Ontario citizens do not want to have to financially bare the burden of such a review. In my opinion, I resent Mr. Bradley for speaking on my behalf on this issue. I simply do not understand why, after receiving 1000s of signed petitions, the minister sees fit to ignore this issue. Some feel that this is a decision along party lines, and the Liberals are pandering to an organization that the party has supported in the past (the party has donated MILLIONS of dollars to the OSPCA). Such a sentiment disturbs me a great deal, in that THIS IS NOT AN ISSUE TO BE DECIDED ALONG PARTY LINES, RATHER ONE THAT SHOULD BE ADDRESSED WITH THE BEST INTERESTS OF ONTARIO ANIMALS IN MIND! Feel free to comment below, and if you wish to contact Minister Bradley encouraging him to reverse his decision on this matter (which I certainly encourage you to do), here is his email address and phone number :

416-325-0484 (Ministry)

905-935-0018 (Constituency)

[email protected]