VANCOUVER, Feb. 1 /CNW/ - In May 2010, Outdoor Adventures at Whistler
Ltd. (OAW) assumed operational control of Howling Dog Tours Whistler
Inc. With professional consultation and new leadership, Howling Dog
Tours Whistler Inc. made significant changes to the business, the
intention of which was to ensure humane treatment of the dogs and
improved safety protocols of the operation.
On December 1, 2010, a Whistler veterinarian engaged by Outdoor
Adventures at Whistler Ltd (OAW) conducted an inspection of all dogs
and kennel conditions. The summary of his report reads, "Overall, I am
very pleased at the substantive improvements seen at the facility and
have no concerns about the dogs' quality of life or for the care they
are provided. Overall, this is a healthy and well cared for group of
The improvements were led by key operational staff at OAW and include
giving away approximately 75 dogs, neutering males and creating an
open-pen kennel rather than tethering the dogs. Guns are no longer
allowed on site and the company's new policy is that euthanasia must be
performed at a veterinary office.
A copy of the veterinarian's report is attached.
Howling Dog Tours Whistler Inc. is entirely separate and distinct from
Howling Dog Tours Ltd. based in Canmore, AB. The two companies are not
COAST MOUNTAIN VETERINARY SERVICES INC.
Dr. David Lane, Dr. Julie Mountifield & Dr. Victoria Addie
Howling Dog Herd Inspection December 10, 2010
The following is a summary of a facility inspection of Howling Dog's
Sled Dog Kennels' located between Pemberton and Whistler. 156 dogs
were given individual physical exams today.
Food and Water
All dogs had access to clean water, and no dehydration was noted on
clinical exam. The inspection itself happened between feedings, so the
process itself was not observed. Most dogs had a normal Body Condition
Score (BCS) but many were mildly overweight. Given that these are
athletic dogs about to enter a winter working season, a BCS of 3.5/5
has advantages. No dog had a BCS less than 2.5/5. The implementation
of the neutering program appears to have greatly facilitated
maintaining weight on previously difficult keepers.
Faecal samples were taken to confirm parasite control and appropriate
Addendum Dec 6, 2010 - results from 5 faecals submitted was negative for
parasites. Existing protocol for parasite control is successful.
It is obvious that a great amount of work was done to improve husbandry
conditions over the summer. Most dogs have been transitioned from
individual tethers to group pen facilities. The pens are well
constructed, roomy and safe. All shelters were clean and dry, with
adequate wind, snow and rain protection. No deficiencies were noted.
The plastic igloo style dog houses should present less danger of sharp
edges than the previous shelters.
Almost all of the dogs were in excellent physical health. Multiple
individual concerns were identified and noted in the medical logs.
Predominantly, these concerns were dental in origin (fractured and/or
abscessed teeth). The only painful conditions noted stemmed from
dental pathology and most of the dental pathology appeared to be
relatively recent (ie: since the last inspection). Overall, the
proportion of dogs with medical conditions, and the nature of the
conditions themselves, was similar to the sort of abnormalities noted
in the pet dog population, and is of lower frequency than noticed on
previous inspections. Overall, the herd's physical health has improved
over previous inspections.
All dogs seemed in very good mental health, with no abnormal, repetitive
or stereotypy behaviours detected. No lick granulomas were observed,
although some barbering persists. Subjectively, the dogs seemed much
happier in their group pens. This observation is substantiated by
comments made by the kennel staff.
Overall, I am very pleased at the substantive improvements seen at the
facility and have no concerns about the dogs' quality of life or for
the care they are provided. Overall, this is a healthy and well cared
for group of dogs.
If you have any questions or concerns, please don't hesitate to call.
David Lane DVM
SOURCE Outdoor Adventures at Whistler Ltd.
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