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November 17, 2009

Quebec Sled Dog Rescue

Humane Society International/Canada

SAINTE-AGATHE-DES-MONTS, Quebec — Humane Society International and the SPCA Laurentides-Labelle partnered to rescue approximately 100 neglected sled dogs in the Upper Laurentians of Quebec. The owner was unable to care properly for his dogs and released them to the care of the SPCA LL.

"The dogs were chained outside without regular access to adequate food, clean water or shelter," said Nikolas Gour, campaigner for HSI Canada. "Our assistance was desperately needed, and Humane Society International is pleased to help give these dogs a better life."

"This rescue will prevent the situation from getting worse: among the dogs we took in, approximately 30 females are pregnant," said Corinne Gonzalez, executive director, SPCA LL. "Without our intervention, the owner could easily have found himself with 150 more puppies when winter is right around the corner. The SPCA LL is asking the population for financial help for part of the food and vet fees for these dogs during their stay in Val-Morin."

Rescuers are swiftly removing the dogs and transporting them to an emergency shelter in Val-Morin, where all of the dogs will receive veterinary treatment, food, water and care. As soon as possible, the dogs will be brought to rescue groups in Canada and in the United States, where they will be sterilized and adopted into loving homes.

United Animal Nations has deployed a team of volunteers to staff the emergency shelter in cooperation with HSI and the SPCA LL. 

"United Animal Nations volunteers are expert at running temporary shelters and supporting communities that become overwhelmed by a large influx of animals," said UAN emergency services manager Janell Matthies. "They will work non-stop to give these rescued dogs clean kennels, food, water and attention like they never experienced before."

Tragically, this situation is not unique, with cases of neglect of sled dogs regularly reported in Canada. HSI and the SPCA LL are calling upon the provincial and federal government to pass stronger animal protection laws to ensure the protection of all dogs. For sled dogs, sterilization and planning for the care of the dogs during the eight-month low season should be a priority.

Earlier this year, The Humane Society of the United States, the American partner of HSI, delivered 25,000 pounds of dog food to remote Alaskan villages to assist sled dogs and their owners affected by flooding of the Yukon River.

Humane Society International/Canada has broadcast-quality video and photos available from this operation for viewing and download by news media outlets here.

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Humane Society International/Canada is a leading force for animal protection, representing tens of thousands of members and constituents across the country. HSI/Canada has active programs in companion animals, wildlife and habitat protection, marine mammal preservation and farm animal welfare. HSI/Canada is proud to be a part of Humane Society International — one of the largest animal protection organizations in the world, with more than ten million members and constituents globally — on the web at hsicanada.ca.

Established in 1985, the SPCA Laurentides-Labelle is a no-kill adoption center located in Sainte-Agathe-des-Monts. Every year, we take in approximately 1,000 abandoned, stray or mistreated animals and provide them with the care and respect they deserve before finding the best adoption homes for them. Our organization is completely independent from other Canadian SPCAs. Please visit us at spcall.ca for further details.

Founded in 1987, United Animal Nations (UAN) focuses on bringing animals out of crisis and strengthening the bond between people and animals through a variety of programs, including emergency sheltering, disaster relief services, financial assistance and education. Learn more at uan.org.

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