Monday, July 25, 2011

Toronto Animal Services - Preliminary decision is out and it sounds very bad for the animals.

Update: The Ford Nation is apparently not a democracy and citizens' voices are not welcome. Sounds like our Charter right to free speech is curtailed in Toronto.

Councillor Doug Ford (brother of Mayor Rob Ford) on a citizen exercising her right to free speech - "
She’s not down here, she’s not dealing with the problem. Tell her to go run in the next election and get democratically elected. And we’d be more than happy to sit down and listen to Margaret Atwood.”

See? Ya gotta be a politician to get Doug to listen. Citizens don't count. Who else in City Hall has that attitude?


And if anyone has the time to connect the dots in this document, please let me know what the h*ll it says. Why are government documents never written in plain English? Insurance policies are, surely to God someone at the City can write in English.

I have a BIG question. I picked up this link with the preliminary decision at 5 p.m. Toronto time and it may have been up before that. At exactly what time did the Committee meeting end?


Everyone I've talked to has the impression that there is a pre-ordained decision to scrap TAS.


Got the following from a friend today. It's time to get loud. Polite, respectful and LOUD. We've got to be heard.
For the animals.


Please read/educate yourself/crosspost and see at the bottom, how you can help.

Toronto City Council is very seriously proposing basically scrapping Toronto Animal Services ('TAS') and privatizing the services. Why should you care? It's important we all understand the repercussions if this goes through.

Taken from


* TAS is a city service responsible for enforcing animal-related bylaws in Toronto.

* Pick up injured animals and provide either veterinary care or humane euthanasia

* Pick up dead wild/domestic animals

* Accept surrendered or stray animals and shelter them; if a dog or cat is deemed available for adoption, they are spayed/neutered, microchipped, dewormed, treated for fleas, vaccinated and licensed

* Run four animal shelters that adopt out animals In 2010, just ONE of these shelters adopted out:

391 dogs

287 small animals

1029 cats

* Provide low-cost euthanasia to the public

* Reunite lost pets with owners

* Deal with animal-related complaints

* Work with local rescues to place certain animals in a more appropriate environment

* Operate a spay/neuter clinics for cats

* Provide Dog Bite Prevention programs to elementary schools

* Respond to animal-related complaints such as dog bites


* There is no accountability when a private company runs animal services.

* A for-profit company has very different motivations than a city shelter or private rescue. It is ALWAYS cheaper to kill animals than to shelter them, provide vet care and adopt them out. It is also ALWAYS cheaper to kill them improperly, causing pain and fear.

If a shelter provides proper care, veterinary services and community outreach, it cannot be a for-profit model.

* Contracting animal services out to a for-profit company has lead to disaster in Montreal. There, the city had an agreement with a private pound, Berger-Blanc, and recently footage of horrific abuse and neglect.

Read about the horrors at Berger-Blanc here (a CBC news report - graphic in nature):

The Montreal SPCA's reaction:

You can see the documentary yourself here (very graphic - be prepared):

Note that at Berger Blanc:

- Killing was done improperly, in the cheapest way possible.

- Very few adoptions occurred.

- Very few lost animals were reunited with owners.

- Veterinary care was not provided.

- Employees administered injections rather than veterinary technicians.

* Now many Montreal citizens want the city to take over animal control - but once it's been contracted out, the city won't have the resources or ability to take on that huge responsibility! That's why we have to keep TAS public while we still have the chance!


* Write to your city councillor and let them know that TAS is important to you SEE HERE FOR YOUR CITY COUNCILLOR:

* Spread the word to your friends, families and neighbours!

* You can sign the petition to keep TAS and stop it's privatization

* For more information/background go to the following sources:

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Saving Toronto Animal Services

OK, there's an online petition and a sample letter to your councillor if you're a Toronto resident (which you can customize, it's a jumping-off point). All from the Save Toronto Animal Services Facebook page.


Sample Letter:

Dear ;

As a constituent of your ward, I am writing to you about the city’s Core Service Review. Specifically, I am concerned about the idea of privatizing Toronto Animal Services.

TAS is an important part of my city. Thanks to the work of TAS, the city has a good reputation for animal rescue, and Torontonians have a reliable resource for retrieving lost pets, adopting new pets, and reporting injured or dead animals. It’s important to me that injured or deceased animals are treated properly when they are picked up, especially as injured or deceased animals could be someone’s pet. We are an animal-loving city and this is a service in which we can take pride.

Animal shelters cannot be a profitable business when run properly. An adoption fee cannot equal the cost of housing, feeding, providing veterinary care, spaying/neutering, vaccinating and microchipping. If animal services is contracted out to a private business, the only way that business can turn a profit is to cut corners, raise euthanasia rates and neglect animal care. Montreal is currently experiencing this with the private pound ‘Berger-Blanc’, which has recently been exposed as a neglectful, cruel and inhumane shelter. With private shelters, there is also much less oversight and more chance for cruelty to continue unseen.

On the other hand, the city of Calgary is often held up as the gold standard in animal control. Calgary has kept their animal services public and has strongly enforced licensing for pets. This has allowed them to create a shelter system that is lauded throughout North America as humane and effective. It’s clear which system we should be trying to emulate.

I believe that Toronto Animal Services is an integral part of this city, and must be kept public. Privatizing animal services will result in cruelty, an increase of stray animals and a lack of resources for pet owners. Please do the humane thing and vote for care, not cruelty – vote to keep animal services public!

Thank you,