SPCA threatens legal action over neglected fur farm animals
Jesse Tahirali, CTVNews.ca
Published Tuesday, August 26, 2014 9:02PM EDT
The Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals is still calling for a Quebec fur farm to be shut down three weeks after images of neglected and abused animals were released.
The group has now announced it will seek legal action if the Quebec government refuses to remove the animals from the Montreal-area farm.
The SPCA describes the conditions as “hell” for the injured foxes and minks being kept in cramped cages. The group is asking the Ministry of Forestry, Wildlife and Parks to seize the animals, which have been deprived of water and left with excrement piling up in their containers.
“These animals need to be hospitalized,” Sophie Gaillard, a spokesperson for the Montreal SPCA, told CTV News. “They have fractures, they have infections, they need to receive sub cutaneous fluids.”
But the ministry isn’t taking steps to retrieve the animals. In a statement last week, it said "strict measures were imposed on the owner and inspections are carried out every 48 hours,” adding that the health of the animals were improving each day.
Gaillard said those efforts fall short.
“They have the power clearly in their legislation to seize the animals and remove them,” she said. “Why they're not using their power to act in this case is unfathomable.”
On Friday, the SPCA sent a demand letter to the government stating they intend to take legal action if the ministry doesn’t act on their recommendations. The group is also asking for charges to be laid against the farm’s owner.
“Clearly, the (ministry) is more interested in protecting a fur farmer than the animals whom it is legislatively mandated to protect,” Gaillard is quoted as saying in a press release Tuesday, where the group it was “taking the next step to compel the government to act.”
On Aug, 20, an unidentified intruder set 3,000 minks free from the farm. The SPCA said then they hoped the minks would be recovered and placed in a sanctuary rather than being returned to the farm.
The SPCA is also encouraging the public to write the ministry requesting action be taken to remove the remainder of the animals from the farm.
With a report from CTV's Nadine Ishak