Mica is an adorable 8 week old lab mix that was purchased from a backyard breeder in Surrey off of Kijiji. Unbeknownst to her new family, she arrived at her new home very sick. Mica wouldn’t eat and had diarrhea that night. By the next morning she began vomiting which then continued throughout the day. Mica was taken to Scottsdale Veterinary Hospital for a check-up where she was diagnosed with parvovirus infection. Parvovirus is a serious disease in puppies, and oftentimes has a fatal outcome even with aggressive therapy and rehydration. The virus causes severe damage to the gastrointestinal tract and is contracted via contact with an infected dog’s feces. Hospitalization and symptomatic therapy for a puppy with parvovirus is costly as they tend to require a minimum of 4 days of intensive care in isolation. If the mother of this puppy was properly vaccinated and the environment properly controlled, Mica would not be in the dire life-threatening situation she is in.
Mica’s new family could not have expected their new puppy to cost them hundreds (perhaps more) dollars within the first few days of arriving,and were not prepared for the financial burden. Her prognosis is guarded, but she is showing signs of improvement, and we want to give the puppy a chance to live a life every dog should have. Therefore, we will help cover the remaining costs of her hospitalization and treatment.
Mica’s story is not an isolated one, and Kijiji has long been criticized for allowing the sale of animals in their classifieds. To date, over 60,000 people have signed an online petition asking the online classifieds to stop selling household pets. But so far, Kijiji refuses to develop a more humane practice, and has stated they will continue to allow for the online sale of animals. The BCSPCA is limited in what it can do, as existing laws do not regulate breeding practices. A problem recognized in 2012 by North Vancouver MLA Jane Thornthwaite, who introduced a private members bill that would have made breeding regulations mandatory, and failure to meet regulations punishable under the Prevention of Cruelty of Animals Act. Unfortunately, the bill did not reach a second reading, because the house was dissolved for the 2013 Provincial Election. In the September 2013 edition of West Coast Veterinarian Thornthwaite said she plans to approach Minister of Agriculture, Pat Primm to discuss adopting the private member’s bill as a government bill. “This would lead to more stakeholder consultations and substantially increase the likelihood that the bill will be passed in the legislature”.
There is not one law that will end animal suffering that results from puppy mills, backyard breeding, and other inhumane practices that put profits before animal welfare. In order for this to end, there needs to be a series of laws and regulations, and a significant shift in consumer knowledge of humane ways to acquire a pet.
Our Pets Are Not Products campaign provides education regarding the animal welfare issues associated with the retail sale of pets. This includes the sale of pets online and in newspapers. There are many alternatives to acquiring a pet, in a responsible and humane way. This includes adopting through a shelter or responsible rescue, or through a responsible breeder. Visit our page for more information.
If you would like to help us help Mica, and other animals in need please consider donating