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Anie Samson is that rare politician who speaks the truth. Samson is the city councilor (they say "mayor" but I think that's roughly equivalent to our "councilor") for the Park Extension borough in Montreal. She talks frankly about animal abandonment, puppy mills and bringing animal control back as a municipal department in Montreal and Quebec in light of the recent undercover videos CBC Radio released of the inner workings of Berger Blanc.

Two Montreal boroughs have already announced that they will no longer deal with Berger Blanc and have instead given the animal control contracts over to the SPCA. The mayor of Montreal, however, is unsure about how to proceed:

“Yes, a lot of owners abandon their pets on July 1,” Tremblay told reporters. “(But) do we have to go public or can we maintain the private sector with the necessary measures to make sure that whatever we saw on television will never happen again? This is our challenge.”

And he goes on to use the excuse that people have problems that need solving too. So what? People will always have problems. Does that means animal abuse should continue unabated?

Even Brigitte Bardot has something to say about all this:

Bardot says employees who can be seen hurting the animals should be judged for acts of cruelty and "sadism that evokes Nazism."

2 Comments to “Updates on Berger Blanc”

  1. mel says:

    There's really no easy answer to this. I have a friend over at the MTL SPCA e-shelter who tells me that they are going to be swamped with these new contracts, especially if more and more of the burroughs decided to cancel with Berger Blanc and go with the SPCA.

    From my understanding, when Montreal tried to get the SPCA to take this contract a couple years back, the SPCA turned it down. It seems like they're only accepting it now because they really don't have much of a choice.

    The SPCA e-shelter is already at capacity as I have an email in my inbox for four adorable little lhasa/bichon/maltese/poodle/schnauzer mixes that need to go to rescue, and we're only May. It's going to be interesting to see what happens in the coming months. I have a feeling that Ontario rescues are about to become incredibly busy.

  2. deva says:

    I think it's interesting that Mme Samson mentioned mandatory neuter/spay laws along with licensing. That should help in the longer term if they pass that - I notice that US municipalities have had a lot of push back on those kinds of laws. The other longer term measure they will need to take is eductional programs. Not sure what they have in the schools, but starting young can't hurt.

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A request

The reason for this blog is to help get specific dogs adopted from TAS but equally important is to try to normalize the idea of shelter dogs being just as good and just as desirable as any other dogs including those which are regularly merchandised by backyard breeders, puppy millers and those few remaining pet store owners who still feel a need to sell live animals. The single greatest stigma shelter animals still face is the belief that shelter animals are substandard animals. Anyone who has had enough experience with shelter animals knows this is untrue but the general public hasn't had the same experiences you've had. They see a nice dog photo in a glossy magazine and too many of them would never think of associating that dog with a dog from a shelter. After all, no one abandons perfectly good dogs, right? Unfortunately, as we all know, perfectly good dogs are abandoned all the time.

The public still too often associates shelter dogs with images of beat up, sick, dirty, severely traumatized animals and while we definitely sometimes see victims such as these, they are certainly not the majority and, regardless, even the most abused animals can very often be saved and made whole again.

Pound Dogs sometimes discusses the sad histories some of the dogs have suffered. For the most part, though, it tries to present the dogs not as victims but as great potential family members. The goal is to raise the profiles of animals in adoption centers so that a potential pet owner sees them as the best choice, not just as the charity choice.

So, here's the favour I'm asking. Whenever you see a dog picture on these pages you think is decent enough, I'd like you to consider sharing it on Facebook or any other social media sites you're using (I know many of you do this already and thank you for that). And when you share it, please mention that the dog in the photo is a shelter dog like so many other shelter dogs waiting for a home. If we can get even five percent of the pet buying public to see shelter dogs differently, to see how beautiful they are and how wonderful they are, and to consider shelter dogs as their first choice for a new family member, we can end the suffering of homeless pets in this country.