Thursday, July 30, 2015

Asking for Those Who Cannot Ask for Themselves

Animals cannot speak, or ask, for themselves.
For years, humane societies and SPCAs across North America, including the Ottawa Humane Society, adopted the slogan, "We speak for those that cannot speak for themselves." It was—and is— a great tagline. It's short, memorable, and gets to the heart of at least a big part of what we do. After all, animals can't be their own advocates. They rely on us, and you, to be their voices, whether it be at a protest march, or in a letter to the editor, or at a city committee.

What we forgot was to add that we also need to ask for those who can't ask for themselves. On behalf of the animals, we ask you to volunteer your time, we ask you to write those letters, and we ask you for money. Dogs can't send out mail appeals, cats put on terrible events and rabbits are the worst at corporate fundraising. But rescuing them from abuse and neglect has a cost. Their care has a cost. The animals don't know it. But you and I do.

A lot of people don't like asking for money. I understand. If the money was for me, it would be very tough for me too. But it's not for me, it's for an abused cat, a dog left in a sweltering car, a raccoon in leg hold trap. It's for 10,000 animals that need us every year. So I don't mind asking for those that can’t ask for themselves any more than I mind speaking for them.

So I am asking—for them. Soon, no doubt, the OHS will ask you to once again be the voice for animals in our community. And soon, no doubt, we will be asking you to open your heart and your wallet and make a gift to the animals. Please say yes to both.

Bruce Roney
Executive Director

Thursday, July 23, 2015

Orphan kittens at the OHS

The Orphan Kitten Program was developed to provide our most vulnerable charges with the extra care and nurturing they need during their stay at the Ottawa Humane Society (OHS) and in one of our specially trained foster homes. 

With the support of dedicated staff and volunteers, our wee felines receive extra care and attention throughout the day. All of the kittens need additional feedings and increased socialization; younger or weaker kittens also need enhanced medical support. 

Once kittens are stable enough at the OHS, they can be moved into foster care, where they receive ongoing care and nurturing. 

The OHS has developed program guidelines that follow best practices in shelter medicine to ensure that we are able to provide as much help to these tiny kittens as we can.

Currently, 70 kittens are benefiting from this life-saving program. 

Sharon Miko
OHS Deputy Director
Three little kittens.
Me first.
Feed me please!
Getting cleaned up.
Having my face washed.
Cuddle time.
How's the reception?
Pat me more please.
Play time.
I'm gonna get that ball.
Got it!
We are ready for whatever is next!

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Practice Fire Safety with Your Pet

Many of us consider our pets to be part of the family – their safety and well-being is of course important to us. But, sometimes, we may forget to include our pets in some of our most important family activities. Do you practice fire safety with your pet?

A few basic steps can help secure a fire emergency plan that includes four-legged family members. Consider these simple tips:
  • Familiarize yourself with your pet’s favourite hiding places in the house; this might be where he will run to during an emergency.
  • Keep a leash or carrier close to the entrance so that you can easily find and use this when removing your pet from the house during an emergency.
  • Ensure your pet’s ID tag and microchip are up to date in case he becomes frightened by the fire or fire trucks and runs away.
  • Keep an up-to-date In Case of Emergency sticker that lists the number and kinds of pets living in your house – keep this by your entrance to alert emergency-response officers of the furry family members who may need rescuing. (These are available at the OHS.)
  • Assign a family member to be responsible for each pet during an emergency.
  • Practice your fire emergency plan with your pet! Go through the steps of where you will find your pet, secure him on a leash or in a carrier, and practice exiting the house safely with him.
  • Think ahead: In the case of a fire, where will your family go? Will your pet be able to go with you, or will you need to arrange a safe place for him to stay?
  • Pet-proof your house – ensure your pet cannot access open flames or anything that could start a fire.
  • Supervise your pet – keep his curious nature out of the kitchen or other places where there are fire risks. When you’re away from home, make sure your pet is in a safe, secure place in the house.
July 15 is National Pet Fire Safety Day. Remember: having a simple plan in place could save your pet’s life.

Andrea Tatarski,
Coordinator: Humane Education

Friday, July 10, 2015

Travel and Your Pet

Now that summer has finally arrived, a lot of pet owners will be taking summer holidays - many of you with your pets. Travelling with the whole family including a pet can be a fun experience, but like most travel (and pet) experiences, it can be made safer and less stressful with a little planning. 

I came across an excellent resource that can help you plan your journey with a pet. Check out Pet Friendly Canada at The site not only has comprehensive lists of tips and things to bring with you, but also identifies pet-friendly accommodation and attractions across the country. 

Summer is painfully short. Please make it a safe and happy one for you and your best friend.

Bruce Roney
Executive Director

Thursday, July 2, 2015

Ottawa Humane Society Dogs Among the Rarest of Canine Breeds

Seven years ago this month, I fell in love with an eight-week-old, black and tan bundle of fur. Maximus, Max to his friends, was available for adoption at my local humane society. He was listed as a shepherd mix. While the unknowns that come with the title of “mix” may have turned some people away, I saw only his huge, floppy ears and loving personality.

After years of being asked by passers-by on the street and at dog parks about what breed of dog he was, I decided to try out a DNA test. Two weeks after swabbing his adorable little cheeks, I received a huge surprise when I learned that he was in fact Lhasa Apso and Miniature Short Haired Daschund with a sprinkling of German shepherd! While you could have knocked me over with a feather, this explained a lot. Looking like a real life version of Scrappy Doo, he is full grown at just under 40 pounds. He has the incredible ability to stretch out slinky style across a queen-sized bed and has the picky eating style of a restaurant critic. Best of all though, he is filled to the brim with love and greets me like a fan greets his favorite rock star every time I walk through the front door. While my little Tibetan Wienershep will never be recognized by the AKC, he is more important than any Monet, Degas or Renoir. He is a masterpiece, a true one of a kind dog and I wouldn’t have it any other way.

This month at the Ottawa Humane Society, we invite you to find your priceless work of art as we shine a light on the incredible uniqueness of all our amazing dogs. Additionally, with every adoption you will be entered to win a grand prize of two tickets to the National Gallery, a $50 gift certificate for PLAY Food and Wine, a Wisdom Panel DNA kit and seven Crazy Beautiful collars. So whether you find your Shaggy English Snugterrier or your Pink-nose Spotted Waterdoodle, you will find that the truly rare, one-of-a-kind dogs humbly go by mix, mutt and Heinz 57.

Sarah Oswald
Manager: Admissions and Rehoming

Share on Social Media