Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Ottawa Humane Society prepares for busiest day of the year

How can you help? Leave your pet at home on Canada Day!

Fireworks - White and RedOTTAWA, Ont. (30 June, 2009) – With the annual Canada Day festivities just around the corner, the Ottawa Humane Society (OHS) is preparing for its own traditional event — the busiest day of the year.

“Every Canada Day, we receive a flood of calls about lost animals,” says Bruce Roney, OHS Executive Director. “We know that hot weather and fireworks are the symbols of a great holiday, but both things pose a significant danger for pets.”

Almost all animals are terrified of fireworks, so the OHS recommends leaving your companion animal at home when you head out to the Hill, or to a neighbourhood celebration. “Even a well-trained dog can become spooked at the sound of fireworks and quickly bolt,” says Mr. Roney. “Many, many animals turn up at the OHS each year because they panicked and ran away after hearing such loud noises.”

It’s too hot today!With Canada Day as the traditional start to summer, it’s also important to be mindful of how hot weather can affect pets. Since the beginning of May, the OHS has received daily calls about dogs left in hot cars. Dogs can’t cool themselves as efficiently as humans can, and on very hot days, temperatures in parked cars can rise to dangerous or even deadly levels in mere minutes.

When the temperature soars, it’s best to leave your companion animal at home, with access to shade, and lots of fresh water. And should you choose to leave your animal with someone else this summer, make sure you provide that person with appropriate documentation (including an emergency number, letter of consent, past vet bills etc.). This proof of owner information will give your designated caregiver the authority to claim the animal on your behalf, should your pet become lost and turn up at a shelter.

By following these simple precautions, both you and your pet can enjoy safe summer celebrations.

Anyone who sees an animal in distress should contact the OHS Emergency Animal Protection Services immediately at 613-725-1532.

For more information:
Tara Jackson, Communications Manager
613-725-3166 ext. 261

OHS launches fund to name volunteer room in honour of Chef Kurt Waldele

OTTAWA, Ont. (29 June, 2009) — The Ottawa Humane Society (OHS) has created a fund to name the volunteer reception room in its planned new shelter in honour of Chef Kurt Waldele.

Kurt WaldeleChef Waldele was one of the most extraordinary and committed supporters of the OHS. For nearly a decade, he volunteered his time and talent to help the animals. He and his wife, Dr. Suzanne Beauchemin, hosted fundraising garden parties at their Cumberland home for many years. Kurt then went on to organize and prepare menus for many successful OHS FurBall galas, delighting guests with his culinary creativity. In all, Kurt’s kindness and generosity helped raise close to $750,000 for Ottawa’s animals.

Kurt passed away in April of 2009, just a few short weeks after attending the 5th annual OHS FurBall at the National Gallery of Canada. To honour his memory and contributions, the OHS will name the volunteer welcome room in its new building, the “Kurt Waldele Volunteer Reception Room.”

“Kurt truly was one of the best friends the Ottawa Humane Society has ever had,” said OHS Executive Director, Bruce Roney, “and we wanted a fitting tribute for his remarkable volunteer achievements. We’re so pleased to be able to create a lasting legacy in Kurt’s name.”

The OHS is seeking help to build and pay for the new room. The fundraising goal for Kurt’s memorial project is $75,000.

To learn how you can contribute to the fund, please visit the OHS website at www.ottawahumane.ca, or the Breaking Ground Building Campaign website at www.breakingground.ca.

For media enquiries, contact:
Tara Jackson, Communications Manager
613-725-3166 ext. 261

Thursday, June 25, 2009

OHS Pet of the Week: Tessy


Tessy (A103796) is a beautiful one year old spayed female cat looking for a new home. This curious yet well-mannered feline enjoys curling up in a lap and sharing her purrs. If you and your family are interested in adopting Tessy, contact the Ottawa Humane Society at 613-725-3166 ext. 258.


Friday, June 19, 2009

Surprise Guests


Roosters are very difficult to photograph - that's what I've learned this week!

If you've visited the stray cat rooms recently, you would have heard the "cock-a-diddle-doo"s of three roosters.  Found in a garbage dumpster last weekend, they all went to responsible new farms today.


Thursday, June 18, 2009

Rainy day at the OHS


Minnie waits for the sun to come out.  (She was adopted soon after this photo was taken this afternoon!)

OHS Pet of the Week: Silver

Silver - horizontal

Meet Silver (A102100), a ten year old neutered male cat from North Bay. Full of purrs, this cuddly cat recently had dentistry. Because he's now missing some teeth, and due to his finicky tendencies, Silver only eats canned food! If you're looking for a cat to sit in your lap and give you lots of love, then this is the cat for you. To adopt Silver, contact the Ottawa Humane Society at 613-725-3166 ext. 258.

Silver - vertical

Friday, June 12, 2009

OHS lays its first charges under new provincial legislation

June 12, 2009
For immediate release

The Ottawa Humane Society (OHS) has laid its first charges under the province's new animal cruelty legislation, which became law in March.

On June 11, OHS inspectors charged Kaden Rocque, 36, for not providing adequate care to animals belonging to his parents. The animals were in the custody of Mr. Rocque over a period of several weeks.

Early in March, the OHS received a call about three possibly abandoned dogs living in a house that had sustained previous fire damage. As a result, the house was not occupied and was without heat.

After multiple attempts to contact the caretakers of the animals, OHS agents applied for an OSPCA warrant and entered the house. Three dogs were found inside, surrounded by feces and urine. While there was food available for the animals, without adequate supervision, the two larger dogs ate most of the food, leaving the youngest dog starving and injured as a result of attempting to seek nourishment. The dog, a three-year-old lab/collie mix, was found emaciated and in need of immediate medical care. The agents issued an order to the owner of the dog to have the animal treated by a veterinarian.

On March 12, 2009, the dog was examined by a vet and found to be dehydrated, under nourished and suffering from several wounds on its head. The dog was treated, returned to the owner and its condition has since improved.

"Allowing distress to happen to an animal is not acceptable," said OHS Inspector, Miriam Smith. "There are certain standards of animal care that must be followed, regardless of who is doing the caretaking."

Mr. Rocque was charged with permitting an animal to be in distress and failing to provide adequate standards of care to an animal, under the OSPCA Act. He's expected to make his first appearance in provincial court on July 16, 2009. If convicted, he faces maximum penalties of up to two years in jail, fines of up to $60,000, and a potential lifetime ban on owning, having custody or care of, or living with any animal.

Although legally mandated to enforce the animal cruelty provisions of the Criminal Code of Canada and the Ontario SPCA Act, the OHS does not receive any government funding or funding from any animal welfare group to perform this essential work.

For media inquiries, contact:
Tara Jackson, Communications Manager
(613) 725-3166 ext. 261

OHS Pet of the Week: Lola


Did you know that rabbits are inquisitive, social and playful pets? These long-eared animals can be perfect for people looking for a quiet yet interactive companion. Lola (A101947) is one of the many rabbits currently waiting for a new home at the Ottawa Humane Society. This spayed, three year old Holland lop loves to cuddle on the couch and enjoys fresh treats such as blueberries! To adopt a rabbit, contact the OHS at 613-725-3166 ext. 258.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Raccoons in a Dumpster

Wild animals are active throughout Ottawa during the warmer months.  Raccoons can be seen walking through neighbourhoods in their quest for food.  Sometimes that quest gets them in trouble!  While it's easy for a raccoon to climb into a dumpster in search of some yummy garbage, it can be almost impossible for the raccoon to climb out.

Raccoons in a Dumpster
A raccoon mom with her kits, trapped in a dumpster.

Thankfully, this common problem has a simple solution.  If you spot a raccoon trapped in a dumpster, simply place a large 2x4 board or a large tree-branch in the dumpster.  This allows the raccoon to climb out of the dumpster, using the board or tree branch as a ramp.  As raccoons are nocturnal animals, we recommend leaving the ramp in the dumpster overnight, to allow the raccoon to escape when she feels safe.

Check on the raccoon the next morning.  If she's still in the dumpster despite the ramp escape route, she may be sick or injured.  That's when you need to call the OHS' Emergency Services at 613-725-1532 for help.

Saved raccoons!
The raccoon family takes refuge in a tree after being rescued.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009


Lili arrived to the OHS via ambulance, in October 2008, after being hit by a car.  The diagnosis: a broken leg!  This sweet girl (who was full of kisses!) became an instant star with the staff. 

Lili’s x-ray
An x-ray of Lili's broken leg.

Lili giving kisses, wearing a cast
Lili wearing her pink cast.

After twelve vet check ups, two orthopedic consultations, two surgeries, and five weeks in a foster home, Lili was adopted in early 2009.  We'd like to thank her new owner, Josh, for adopting this wonderful girl, and for sending us the following update:

I adopted Lili a boxer mix female dog back in January and I am happy to tell you she and I are doing great. I am not sure if you remember her but she was hit by a car in October of 2008 and the great people at the Humane Society saved her leg and her life. She has completely healed and you would never know she had been hit by a car. Her bald patches have completely grown back and she loves to run. 
She loves to play with other dogs and my 3 year old niece. She is a constant source of joy in everyone's life that she touches.  She truly is a success story and I have attached a couple of pictures for you to see her. One of the pictures is of her hanging out at work with me a few months ago and the other image is of her and her Rottweiler buddy Tyson taken a few weeks ago.

Lili at the office
Lili at the office

Lili and Tyson
Lili with her new pal, Tyson

Thank you for the update, Josh!  We hope that you and Lili have many happy years together.

OHS applauds guilty plea following sentencing in cat cruelty case

June 10 , 2009
For immediate release

The Ottawa Humane Society (OHS) is applauding Monday's guilty plea following the sentencing in the case of a kitten that was beaten, strangled and had its tongue sliced with a knife.

Jesse Duhaime, 30, was originally charged in December of 2007 after his girlfriend brought the cat to the OHS seeking emergency medical care. The four-month-old kitten had to be humanely euthanized due to the extent of its injuries.

In court on June 8, Mr. Duhaime plead guilty to the two counts of animal cruelty and other charges against him. He was sentenced to an 18-month probation, during which time he’s required to seek treatment for mental health issues, five months in jail and a 10-year prohibition from owning, having the custody or control of animals. He's also forbidden from residing at the same premises as an animal during that time.

Recent changes to the Criminal Code of Canada now allow for more than a two-year prohibition on owning animals, and the introduction on a ban on living with animals for those charged with animal cruelty offences.

"While we had hoped for a lifetime ban on owning animals in this case, the 10-year ban is precedent setting for us," said OHS Inspector Miriam Smith. "Hopefully it will send a strong message about the consequences of abusing animals."

The OHS has noted an increase in the number of animal cruelty cases involving mental health issues in recent years.

Although legally mandated to enforce the animal cruelty provisions of the Criminal Code of Canada and the Ontario SPCA Act, the OHS does not receive any government funding or funding from any animal welfare group to perform this essential work.

For media inquiries, contact:
Tara Jackson, Communications Manager
(613) 725-3166 ext. 261

Monday, June 8, 2009

Meet a chinchilla!

Luka the Chinchilla

You may have noticed the seemingly strange, fluffy -- yet cute! -- animal available for adoption on the OHS' website.  This is Luka, a pet chinchilla! 

Chinchillas are very unique amongst the small animal pet world. Famous for their fur, chinchillas are now growing in popularity as pets. Active during the evening and early-morning hours, chinchillas are best suited for adult pet-owners who are looking for an independent yet unique pet.

Chinchillas make a variety of vocalizations, including chirps, squeaks, and barks. Since they can be active at night, it is not uncommon for them to vocalize in the early hours of the morning.  They are also prone chewers, as their teeth grow throughout their lives, so they require safe things to chew on. Pumice stone and wood blocks are great things to give a chinchilla to chew.

Chinchillas are interesting pets that can provide many years of companionship. Captive chinchillas commonly live 15 years, but some have been known to live up to 20 or more. Perhaps a chinchilla would be the perfect pet for you!  To learn more about pet chinchillas, contact the OHS Adoption Centre.

Friday, June 5, 2009

Warm Weather this Weekend!

Too HotWith temperatures expected to soar this weekend, the Ottawa Humane Society (OHS) is cautioning pet owners to keep their animals safe — by keeping them at home.

The best way to protect your pet in hot weather is to keep him indoors, in a cool room and out of the sun. Make sure he has plenty of water available and limit activity levels during peak hours of sunshine.

It’s especially important to resist the urge to take Fido or Fluffy along for a car ride. On a hot day, the temperature inside a parked car can rise to dangerous levels quite quickly. Even parking in the shade or lowering windows does little to reduce the air inside a car, which can easily surpass 40°C in mere minutes. With only hot air to breathe, a dog’s normal cooling process of panting doesn’t work, and his internal temperature can rise, leading to severe heat exhaustion, brain damage or even death.

Signs of canine heatstroke include rapid heartbeat, lack of coordination, weakness or muscle tremors, unconsciousness, glazed eyes or convulsions.

If you see an animal that may be suffering from heat exhaustion, and the owner can’t be quickly located, call the Ottawa Humane Society at 613-725-1532.

Hot Moxie

The OHS recommends these tips to keep pets safe during hot spells:

  • Monitor the activity of your animals and be careful they don’t over exert themselves.

  • If you suspect heat stress, bring your pet to a cool area, gradually lower your pet’s temperature by sponging cool water onto him/her and call your veterinarian immediately.

  • When you take your dog out for exercise, make sure to bring enough water for the both of you. Exercise your pets — more slowly and for shorter periods of time — in the early morning and/or evening to avoid the midday heat.

  • If your pet spends lots of time outdoors, make sure there is adequate shelter for protection from the sun and heat. Outside kennels need to be well ventilated and situated in shaded areas. Clean, fresh water must be accessible at all times.

  • Sun-baked asphalt can burn paws — keep to the grass, but make sure to watch out for pesticide warnings!

  • Ask your veterinarian about sunscreen for your pets — certain parts of your dog (for example, nose and ears) can get sunburned!

OHS Pet of the Week: Floyd


Meet Floyd (A102387), a one year old neutered male Rottweiler and German shepherd dog. Floyd is an active dog, requiring lots of daily exercise, ongoing socialization and obedience training. While he is respectful of other dogs, he loves to chase cats! This vibrant boy will make a wonderful companion for the right home. To learn more about Floyd, contact the Ottawa Humane Society at 613-725-3166 ext. 258.


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