Ontario SPCA

Ontario SPCA

December 06, 2009 18:49 ET

Ontario Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Finds More Evidence of Cruelty and Mismanagement at Toronto Humane Society

TORONTO, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - Dec. 6, 2009) - Over the past five days, investigators for the Ontario Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals probing animal cruelty allegations at the Toronto Humane Society have found more disturbing evidence.

Cederick, diabetic 10-year-old cat that has been at the THS since January, 2008, was found in a great deal of pain because of severe inflammation of the gums and gingivitis. Cederick never received proper follow-up treatment after having several teeth removed in September, 2009. Cederick is receiving dental treatment, pain medication and antibiotics.

Betsy, a three-year-old tabby cat, came to the THS on Oct. 5, 2009. At the time, vet records noted an eye problem. Betsy received no follow-up treatment until Nov. 27 – after the OSPCA search warrant was executed – when a veterinarian discovered the eye problem had become so bad the eye had to be removed. Betsy's eye was removed Thursday.

Larry, a 15-year-old cat at the THS since 2008, had to be euthanized on Wednesday. Larry had not been examined by a vet, according to records, since 2008, when a possible brain tumour was noted. Larry had three abscessed teeth leaking pus and overgrown claws with one embedded in its paw.

A cat named Alex had to have its leg amputated on Thursday. Alex was brought to the THS in January 2009; Alex was found with no vet records until July 1, 2009, when a vet noted he could not bear its weight on its back foot and found dry discharge on the foot. In August, the vet noted an abscess on Alex's toes, requiring the amputation of one toe. Alex was not examined between Aug. 22 and Oct. 1, when foot wounds were treated. Alex's last examination was Oct. 25 before OSPCA vets examined it on Nov. 27, after the warrant was executed. That's when they found bone fragments and decayed muscle tissue, requiring amputation.

"Every day of this investigation reveals more about how the THS was managed prior to the execution of the search warrant on Nov. 26," said OSPCA investigator Kevin Strooband. "We continue to find more evidence supporting our search warrant and the charges laid. But most importantly, the animals are finally getting the attention, care and treatment that one would expect from an animal shelter."

"We have been inspired by selfless actions of THS volunteers and staff during the past week," said OSPCA Chief Executive Officer Kate MacDonald. "They have been working very hard helping us examine animals and deliver emergency care. They are obviously pleased to see that action is being taken to get the THS back in shape as a quality animal-care shelter and adoption centre."

The OSPCA would like to reassure the public that over 1,000 animals at the THS are getting excellent care. The investigation into animal cruelty will continue for the foreseeable future, but the OSPCA will let the public know in advance when normal operations are due to resume.

In the meantime, people looking to adopt a pet contact other animal-care facilities in the Toronto area:

  • Etobicoke Humane Society (416) 249 - 6100
  • Mississauga Humane Society (905) 271 - 0883
  • Toronto Animal Services (416) 338 – 7297
  • Ontario SPCA, York Region Branch (905) 898-7122 X306

Also, the OSPCA would like to thank IAMS, Purina Bark & Fitz pet stores, and Royal Canin for donating pet food for THS animals during this time, as well as Zeller's for donating blankets, VIP Sitters for grooming services and Antec Labs for lab tests.

Contact Information

  • Ontario Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals
    Rosaline Ryan
    Director of Marketing and Communications
    (905) 898-7122 Ext. 308 or (416) 428-9886 mobile
    Ontario Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals
    Alison Cross
    Manager of Marketing and Communications
    (905) 853-2108 Mobile