British Columbia – Flood Update
We have been in contact with members in British Columbia to stay up to date with the business and pet family situations in the affected areas. Food and hard-goods delivery a problem, however, many groups around the flooded zones are organizing much-needed food and supplies while local pilots fill their personal planes, and make the flight to the towns in need. Everyone is coming together to help however they can. At this point the Canadian Disaster Animal Response Team has not yet received approval to enter the area until safe passage is possible, however, more local teams and municipalities are doing what they can to support those affected. We have also connected with the BCSPCA to offer assistance. Additionally, Canada and the United States have agreed to use the emergency transit provisions of a joint policy. The policy is specifically designed to support animal welfare and transport during emergency situations. It allows regulated animals, such as livestock and birds, to transit across the border in emergencies, such as flooding, forest fires, extreme weather conditions, and disaster and/or when routine transportation routes are impaired without feasible alternatives.
One of the most difficult things to do when natural disaster strikes is to wait until there is specific and clear direction on how to help. We will keep you posted on any developments. Thank you to our BC-based members for doing all you can to help so far and also for standing ready when the call comes.
Winnipeg – Update on proposed ban on the sale of specialty pets
Since the summer PIJAC Canada staff and LIVE committee members have been speaking with the city of Winnipeg about proposed changes to their Responsible Pet Ownership Bylaw. The bylaw included changes that would severely reduce the types of allowable pets in the city and take away the ability for many pet families to have a pet. After months of campaigning with Winnipeg pet retailers and local pet families to promote the importance of specialty pets to city officials, we are pleased to be working with the City and other groups in the new year to continue the discussion around the health and care of these pets and the important role they play in pet families.
Toronto – Review of rabbit and guinea pig ownership
The City of Toronto is undertaking a review of the Animal Bylaw to improve the coexistence of humans and wildlife, to decrease nuisance behaviour and to enhance animal welfare. The review’s aimed is to modernize various rules such as feeding wildlife, pet licensing, the ownership of rabbits, guinea pigs and pigeons will also explore a positive list of animals that can keep as pets. We will be connecting with members this week and engaging the city in this discussion, specifically about ownership of rabbits and guinea pigs, and the effectiveness of a prohibited list over the proposed positive list. PIJAC Canada’s newly formed LIVE committee will be guiding these efforts. Animal Bylaw Review – City of Toronto Timelines: Feedback and survey closing date: December 17 at 11:59 p.m., Report to the Economic and Community Development Committee to be presented in Spring 2022.