AR-News: Largest animal cruelty fine in Ontario's history for puppy
Barry Kent MacKay
mimus at sympatico.ca
Sat Mar 20 08:14:12 EST 2004
March 19, 2004
From a press release
NEWMARKET, ON - The largest fine ever for an animal cruelty offence in
Ontario was imposed yesterday when Sandra Quinn, now of Burlington,
Ontario received a fine of $12,000 after pleading guilty in the Ontario
Court of Justice, Norfolk County, to a charge brought under the Ontario
Quinn was charged in February last year by the Ontario SPCA following
the removal of 125 dogs from Cherry Valley Kennels near Waterford,
Ontario. She was the first person to be charged under the Act as
amended in December 2002 to address offences by breeders of dogs and
cats for sale. The amendments set out standards of care that breeders
of dogs and cats for sale must adhere to, and enable much stiffer
penalties than in the past. In addition to the fine, Quinn also
received a ten-year prohibition from breeding and selling dogs and cats.
William Quinn, also charged in this investigation, is scheduled to
appear in court in May.
When the dogs were removed on Valentine's Day last year they were in
appalling condition - emaciated, dehydrated, severely matted and
encrusted with feces, and had numerous medical problems. Two of the
dogs were in such bad condition they had to be euthanized. One dog was
found frozen to death and two half-burned carcasses were found in a
fire pit. Care was provided to the dogs - Chows, American Eskimos,
Pomeranians, Keeshonds and other small breeds, at several Ontario SPCA
Branches and affiliated humane societies, and all except the two that
had to be euthanized were adopted into loving new homes.
"This is the first case brought under the amended Ontario SPCA Act to
reach a sentence," said Ontario SPCA Senior Inspector Darren Grandel.
"The sentence marks a significant shift in the seriousness with which
crimes against animals are viewed in the province, although it is well
short of what is allowed in the Act."
The Ontario SPCA would particularly like to have seen the sentence
include a period of probation which would have prohibited owning of
pets in addition to breeding and selling, and also given the Society
inspection rights to monitor compliance with the ban.
"It is certainly a welcome move in the right direction however,"
commented Society Chief Executive Officer, Judy Marshall. "I would like
to congratulate everyone who supported our campaign to secure
amendments to the Act which better enable us to stamp out puppy mills -
especially the nearly quarter of a million people who signed the 'Honey
Needs You' campaign petition."
"I also congratulate our provincial politicians, including Julia Munro
who introduced the Bill containing the amendments to the provincial
parliament. I would strongly urge their federal counterparts to follow
suit and pass the animal cruelty amendments to the Criminal Code of
Canada that have been stalled in Ottawa for over four years and are now
before Parliament again as Bill C-22."
The Ontario SPCA does not receive any part of the $12,000 fine. The
cost of the investigation, removal, treatment, care and rehabilitation
of the dogs - in excess of $100,000, has put a great strain on the
resources of the Ontario SPCA which is a registered charity relying on
donations. Funds are urgently needed to help stamp out puppy mills.
Call 1-888-ONT-SPCA (668-7722) extension 322. Your support with a
donation is greatly appreciated. Photo of one of the rescued Chows
(left) and her puppy, born while at the Ontario SPCA, after they had
both been adopted. Photo available for download at
A word about the Ontario Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to
Animals (Ontario SPCA):
The Ontario SPCA, with 27 Branches and 32 affiliated humane societies
and SPCA's, is unique amongst animal welfare organizations in Ontario:
SPCA Act mandates the Society to enforce animal cruelty laws and
provides society investigators with police powers to do so. The Society
is a registered charity, relying on donations to fund animal
protection, care and rehabilitation for all animals, government and
industry advocacy and public education. The Ontario SPCA is a member of
the Canadian Federation of Humane Societies (CFHS) and is affiliated
with the Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (RSPCA).
Barry Kent MacKay
Animal Protection Institute
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