Advocacy Across the Country – April

The following is a summary of the ongoing advocacy work being done by the PIJAC Canada team.  Here is what is happening across Canada:


On April 11th, in a 3:1 vote, the Winnipeg Protection, Community Services, and Parks Committee approved a motion to drop the exotics component from the Responsible Pet Ownership By-law Review. The City of Winnipeg is on hold in considering any changes to the existing exotics bylaw. The bylaw will move next to the executive committee and then to the full council for a decision on April 28th.  Although our work is not yet complete, it was heartening to hear the decision yesterday. Our sincerest thanks go out to each business, pet professional, and members of the animal-loving public who took it upon themselves to get involved. The time spent, taking the city’s survey, signing Manitoba Canary Finch Club’s petition, the Winnipeg Specialty Pets email campaign, and writing to city councilors, has indeed paid off so far. Our sincere appreciation goes to Can-Herp, the Manitoba Canary Finch Club, Winnipeg Specialty Pets, aFISHionados, Thrive Pets, Petland and many other local businesses who worked to speak for specialty pets, families, and businesses in the city. We look forward to speaking with the Council on April 28th as they make the final decision on their Responsible Pet Ownership Bylaw.

OSHAWAPIJAC Canada made a presentation to the Oshawa Corporate Services Committee supporting the municipal staff report recommendation to continue using the existing prohibited list put in place in 2012. This list was based on the PIJAC Canada Exotic Animal Policy. While city staff is in support of maintaining the prohibited list, other stakeholder groups are lobbying for a positive list which could significantly reduce the number of specialty pets available to citizens in that city. The Committee asked for staff to continue their research and present a sample permitted list to compare with the existing prohibited list.  Council also decided to move ahead with mandating that rabbits made to the community can only come from shelters and rescues.

For an explanation of prohibited vs permitted lists and a summary regarding specialty pets in this country, you can download Canada Loves Specialty Pets from our website. Additionally, we encourage you to take a look at

NATIONAL Avian Influenza: The Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) has been updating its resource page regarding Avian Influenza (H5N1).  With migration season well upon us, the spread of the disease is likely to continue. For those who serve the needs of customers with birds, both pet and agricultural, we encourage you to pass along or post this link.

Safe Rodent Handling Guidelines from PHAC: Our colleagues at the Public Health Agency of Canada have shared a recent infographic dealing with key steps to help reduce zoonotic disease transmission from rodents.

Government Plan to prevent and control BSal: Environment and Climate Change Canada has updated The North American Strategic Plan to Prevent and Control Invasions of the Lethal Salamander Pathogen Batrachochytrium salamandrivorans which is now available online as well as the updated implementation guide. You can find these documents and more: here