Humane Society International/Canada

Humane Society International/Canada
Montreal SPCA

Montreal SPCA
Companion Animal Adoption Centres of Quebec

Companion Animal Adoption Centres of Quebec
Clinique Veterinaire Plateau Mont Royal

Clinique Veterinaire Plateau Mont Royal
Animal Alliance of Canada

Animal Alliance of Canada

May 17, 2011 10:54 ET

R-PAQ Calls for Mayor Tremblay to Take Concrete Measures to End For-Profit Pounds in Montreal

MONTRÉAL, QUÉBEC--(Marketwire - May 17, 2011) - Regroupement pour la Protection des Animaux du Québec is encouraged by Richard Deschamps' recent announcement that the city is undertaking a review of the way in which companion animals are treated in Montréal, but disappointed that the city does not address the problems with the current animal control system in place. R-PAQ has expressed that it is critical that Mayor Tremblay shows leadership and takes immediate concrete steps to end for-profit pounds in the city.

"A municipally-run animal services will be a benefit for all citizens of Montréal – including animals, their owners, and taxpayers," said Johanne Tassé, member of R-PAQ and founder of the caacQ. "We are at an important crossroads in Montréal's history. It is time to realize that we lag far behind most other cities across North America and we must move our city in line with Toronto, Calgary and other cities that have done the responsible thing by offering city-run animal services."

"This is an issue that transcends politics, and the citizens of Montréal have made it clear that they will neither turn a blind eye, nor effectively condone with their tax dollars, such animal abuse in their own back yard," said Lauren Scott, member of R-PAQ and campaigner for Humane Society International/Canada. "There are fundamental flaws with Montréal's for-profit pounds and the only answer lies in overhauling the entire system. While Mr. Deschamps' announcement addresses bits and pieces of the problem, the bigger picture is being overlooked."

"Appropriate budgeting is central to a credible plan for Montréal's animal services. The type of service R-PAQ supports is already in place in cities across North America," said Alanna Devine, member of R-PAQ and director of Animal Advocacy for the Montréal SPCA. "Animal Services need to be a standard part of the municipal government's budget, just like the water, police, or fire department. It is all a matter of reprioritizing the current city budget and spending, not raising, taxes."

It is important to remember that an average of 100 animals a day are still entering for-profit pounds like Berger Blanc in Montréal. It also appears that Berger Blanc has neither honored nor enforced many of the changes requested by the boroughs since the Enquête report on Radio-Canada aired on April 21.

Since Berger Blanc continues to service nine boroughs on the island of Montréal, at a minimum it must:

  • provide OMVQ-approved veterinary care

  • provide transparent reporting on the numbers, provenance and fate of animals in its care

  • impose mandatory sterilization of animals adopted out

  • use a universal microchip scanner on every animal upon arrival

  • regularly update its website so that owners of lost animals can verify if the animals are at the facility

"The goals of reducing overpopulation, sterilizing companion animals and helping citizens to be responsible owners goes right to the heart of the current crisis," said Me Isabelle Poitras, member of R-PAQ and initiator of the Enquête's story. "Specific timelines are of the essence, for both short- and long-term study and implementation."

R-PAQ applauds the city's willingness to tackle these issues, but reminds the public that neither the budgetary issue nor the for-profit model of animal services has been addressed by the city's plan. R-PAQ looks forward to working closely with the Ville de Montréal by offering its time and expertise as we work together towards these goals.

R-PAQ invites concerned Québec citizens to sign the online petition on the National Assembly website. The petition calls for minimal and uniform standards for the operation of shelters throughout the province.

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