Ontario - The Ministry of Community Safety and Correctional Services informed this morning that the province will be strengthening protection for animals through regular inspections of zoos and aquariums, by boosting enforcement of animal welfare laws, cracking down on puppy and kitten mills, and enhancing standards of care for marine mammals.
"Our government cares deeply for the well-being of animals wherever they live in this province. These measures strengthen the enforcement of animal welfare laws in under-served areas, dedicate resources to specific areas of concern such as inspections of zoos and aquariums and will set new standards of care for marine mammals.” Madeleine Meilleur - Minister of Community Safety and Correctional Service
The Ontario Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (OSPCA) and the Ontario government will strengthen protection for animals by:
- Enhancing the responsiveness of investigators to animal welfare complaints from rural and northern communities.
- Establishing a 24-7 centralized dispatch service to ensure enforcement officers can respond effectively to calls about animal abuse from anywhere in the province.
- Creating a squad of specially trained investigators who will crack down on puppy and kitten mills.
- Delivering specialized livestock training for investigators in the agricultural sector.
The OSPCA will also enhance protection for animals in captivity by:
- Conducting regular inspections of zoos and aquariums to ensure the health and safety of animals.
- Establish and maintain a registry of zoos and aquariums to support twice-yearly inspections.
"This announcement begins a new era for animal protection in Ontario. We are pleased and proud to partner with the province on this historic initiative.” Rob Godfrey - Chair, Ontario Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals
The province makes the commitment of seeking technical advice from the scientific community regarding standards of care for all marine mammals, including whales, dolphins and seals. In developing the final regulatory standards the economic and tourism impact of these standards on affected communities will be considered.
Working to protect animals from abuse and neglect is part of the government's plan to work together as One Ontario to address the unique needs of every community, so that we can build a successful, compassionate and united province.
Facts about Ontario and how they say they help animals.
- Ontario is providing the OSPCA with $5.5 million annually to strengthen protection for animals. OSPCA will also provide regular progress reports to government that demonstrate how it’s delivering on these enforcement initiatives.
- The Ontario Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act was last amended in 2009, making it the strongest animal welfare legislation in Canada.
- There are over 60 zoos and aquariums in Ontario — more than any other province.