PIJAC Canada Urges Ontario Government to Allow Pet Families Access to Basic Health Maintenance Services.


PIJAC Canada Urges Ontario Government to Allow Pet Families Access to Basic Health Maintenance Services.

January 19, 2021, Ottawa, ON:   As the province fights to contain COVID-19, Ontarians understand that restrictions play a critical role in keeping citizens safe, however during the incremental implementation of these measures, a gap has opened-up with respect to the health maintenance of pets by the exclusion of health-related grooming services for dogs, cats, and other species.

“The problem seems to be that grooming businesses are classified as either retail or salon space”, say Christine Carrière, CEO of PIJAC Canada, “The legislation makes allowances for “Other businesses that provide services to animals that are necessary for their health and welfare, including farms, boarding kennels, stables, animal shelters, and research facilities. (section 22 of Schedule 2 – O. Reg. 779/20). Grooming services need to be classified under health and welfare as they are providing a service that speaks directly to the physical wellbeing of our animals.  Just as farriers are allowed to care for horses our smaller animals deserve the same consideration.”

Health-related preventative care provided by groomers refers to issue if left untreated, would lead to veterinary intervention, such as safe removal of severe matting, cutting overgrown nails that lead to gait problems, infections or injuries, and skin conditions. Currently, the legislation only permits veterinary practices to perform grooming services. With over half the province owning at least one pet, this leaves thousands of animals in need as without health-specific maintenance dog, cat, small mammal, and even bird, health issues can arise quickly. As veterinarians have been advised to only take urgent cases, they are not able to keep up with basic animal care needs which would normally be taken care of by grooming professionals. This, in turn, endangers long-term health, causes expensive care bills, longer recovery times, a severe backlog in service availability for both sectors, and most importantly distress to the animal which contravenes the Provincial Animal Welfare Services Act.

PIJAC Canada is calling once again upon the government to add grooming business to the list of services considered necessary for the welfare of Ontario’s pets.

PIJAC Canada is a national non-profit dedicated to ensuring the highest level of pet care and equitable representing all facets of the industry. Their mission is to offer guidance and resources to pet businesses and help advance the well-being of Canada’s animals.

Susan Dankert
Communications Director