October 15, 2014
Hundreds of Dogs to be Sterilized in Quebec First Nations Community
A mass sterilization clinic will be held 18-22 October to provide veterinary services for stray and roaming dogs in a remote First National reserve. Humane Society International/Canada and Chiots Nordiques are pairing up for the second time this year in Opitciwan, Qc to sterilize the remaining dogs in the community.
Mass sterilization is an efficient and humane method to address the canine overpopulation crisis which these communities face but do not have the resources to address. Moreover, the lack of veterinary services leads to animal welfare issues such as untreated wounds or illnesses. These clinics not only help animals in need- they also help these communities by offering a humane solution to cope with issues that result from canine overpopulation.
Ewa Demianowicz, campaign manager for HSI/Canada, said: “Canadians do not always realize that even in our own country, we have street dog populations that need attention. First Nations reserves across Canada struggle with canine overpopulation and the lack of access to veterinary services. This leads to not only animal welfare issues but also problems for the community such as bites or the spread of zoonotic diseases. It is an honor for us to participate in Chiots Nordiques’ mission to help stray and roaming dogs and the communities that care for them.”
Éric Coïa, president of Chiots Nordiques, added: “This will be our third spay/neuter clinic in cooperation with, and financed by, HSI/Canada. We are very grateful for this organization’s support of our mission to end canine overpopulation in First Nations communities. For the next clinic in Opitciwan, we plan to sterilize about 100 stray dogs and bring close to 40 dogs and puppies back with us for adoption.”
In 2013 the Quebec Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food created a task force to provide recommendations on the issue of stray dog overpopulation in Northern Quebec and in First Nation communities. HSI/Canada and Chiots Nordiques were part of that committee and recommended further action from the government on this issue, such as launching a government sponsored mass sterilization program for dogs in First Nation communities.