Category Archives: SPCA

Horrific Animal Cruelty Incident…How did this happen?

Yesterday, the media broke a story here in Nova Scotia, that has everyone reeling.  Reports revealed that over one hundred animals, including 80 cats and 27 dogs, were rescued from a site which had been operating as some sort of ‘animal shelter’ in Port Hastings, Nova Scotia.   The SPCA had been trying to investigate this situation for several months.  It was not until last Sunday, that they had the legal authority to search the premises.  When their team of workers, along with RCMP officers, entered the Celtic Pet Rescue centre, they were horrified to find two building full of animals in deplorable conditions.  Cats and dogs were lying about in toxic filth. The stench of ammonia was so bad, that some of the workers were not able to proceed.   A number of animals were found dead.  The basement was filled with sewage where animals lay. Cats were so encrusted with feces, that their colour could not be determined until they were taken away and bathed for hours. A dog and her nine puppies were found in a crate, hidden by boxes, nursing her pups.  It was estimated that many of the animals had not been attended for over sixty hours.  SPCA workers were shocked (and they don’t shock easily) by the scene.  They had anticipated a rescue of 30 or so animals and ended up with a scene they had not expected or prepared for. The situation necessitated two trips to remove the animals.  The cats and dogs were taken to sites in Halifax and Dartmouth, for the most part, and work began to evaluate their condition and treat them.  Nine cats were found to have Feline Leukemia. The response has been overwhelming from concerned animal advocates.  Even people who are not big animal lovers have expressed sadness and concern, upon hearing the news.  Offers of veterinary care, donations, and requests to adopt have poured in.  Of course, the first question on everyone’s mind, is HOW DID THIS HAPPEN?  The woman who was granted a license to operate an ‘animal shelter’, has not been charged yet, though public outrage will undoubtedly result in a careful investigation on the part of the authorities.  It is expected that charges will be laid. Background information on the operator of this ‘shelter’, is sketchy.  The SPCA is the only organization that has the right to actively investigate and seize animals in such circumstances in Nova Scotia.  Their resources are limited and their powers are also not extensive.  The woman who applied for, and received a lisence to operate this place, is reported to have met standards to open.  How and why conditions deteriorated is unknown.  Without legal authority, it was not until recently that the SPCA were granted a warrent to enter, even though they had requested permission to examine the site, and were denied. They could not act.  If an adult is suspected of physical abuse or neglect of a child, the system moves very quickly.  Obviously, society’s conscience and values, do not provide for the same intense scrutiny and care for animals,  as it does for children. We can’t seem to strike a balance. Comment?