Sled dogs betrayed in new care standards

Vancouver Humane Society says dogs will continue to suffer and be needlessly killed

VANCOUVER, Feb. 20, 2012 /CNW/ - The Vancouver Humane Society (VHS) says the care standards for sled dogs, announced today by the B.C. government, have completely failed to address the dogs' welfare problems.

Under the standards sled dogs will still be tethered for long periods and can still be shot if they are unwanted and cannot be rehomed.  In addition, the standards provide no resources for on-site inspections or enforcement of the regulations.

"The standards are a travesty," says VHS executive director Debra Probert.  "What is the point of having regulations if there is no funding for enforcement?"  Probert says dogs will continue to suffer from poor conditions at isolated sled dog operations. "The tethering of dogs for long periods is inhumane and unacceptable, yet this will continue under the new regulations."

The new standards allow operators to kill sled dogs if they have "made reasonable efforts to rehome the sled dog, but those efforts have been unsuccessful."  Probert says this means dogs will remain at risk of being killed when they are surplus to an operator's requirements.

SOURCE Vancouver Humane Society

For further information:

Debra Probert: 604 266 9744   Cell: 778 994 9744
Peter Fricker:   604 266 9744   Cell: 604 603 5401

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