April 18, 2008, CALGARY – The Humane Society of Canada (HSC) is concerned about the deaths of seven dogs and cats who were poisoned recently in the Inglewood area of Calgary and is offering a $1,000 reward for information resulting in the conviction of those responsible for committing these cruel acts.

The Humane Society of Canada is not only concerned with these cases of poisoning, but also with the numerous cases of animal cruelty that have occurred in Alberta during the last few months.

“No circumstance warrants brutally killing pets with poison,” says Michael O’Sullivan, HSC Executive Director. “Leaving poison for pets is not only dangerous for the intended victims, but also for unintended potential victims including young children and wildlife,” states an angry O’Sullivan.

O’Sullivan, whose family shares their home with dogs and cats, wants to remind people that for everyone’s sake they need to keep their pets under strict supervision at all times. “Our four legged friends depend on us for their well being and that includes protecting them from those who would do them harm,” he said.

Any owner who suspects their pet has been poisoned should contact their veterinarian immediately.

“Cruelty to animals is a criminal offence,” says O’Sullivan. “Recent changes to the Canadian Criminal Code mean that offenders face maximum penalties of up to 5 years in prison for indictable offences and for summary convictions - fines of up to $10,000 and up to eighteen months in jail. In addition to the criminal record and fines, the person convicted can also be prohibited from owning, having the custody or control of or residing in the same premises as an animal or a bird for any period that the court considers appropriate but, in the case of a second or subsequent offence, for a minimum of five years. Damages may be awarded by the court to the person or organization that had to pay for the care of the animal as a result of the offence.”

The Humane Society of Canada is asking for the public’s help in dealing with those who commit such horrendous crimes. Anyone with information is urged to contact the Calgary Police Service at 403-266-1234 or The Humane Society of Canada at 1-800-641-KIND (5463).

CONTACT: Michael O'Sullivan by toll free 1-800-641-KIND or Michael on his cell phone (416) 876-9685 or at www.humanesociety.com via twitter at www.twitter.com/HSCanada and on Facebook at: http://www.facebook.com/pages/The-Humane-Society-of-Canada/211468055538280

[For more than 17 years, Al Hickey was the Chief Executive of the BC SPCA and before that headed up the Alberta and BC Chambers of Commerce, and was the Executive Director of the Boys and Girls Club of Greater Vancouver. He has been The HSC Western Regional Director for over 12 years. He has 4 children and 6 grandchildren. For his lifetime of achievement dedicated to helping people, animals and the environment, we have bestowed upon him our prestigious Heroes for Animals Award, shared by only a handful of people and organizations.

A father with two children, and a houseful of dogs and cats, Michael O'Sullivan has worked across Canada and in over 110 countries during the last 40 years helping people, animals and nature.]

The Humane Society of Canada (HSC) works to protect dogs, cats, horses, birds, rabbits and small animals, livestock, lab animals, wildlife and the environment. We carry out hands on programs to help animals and nature, mount rescue operations, expose cruelty through hard hitting undercover investigations, work to pass laws to protect animals, use a multidisciplinary approach, support animal shelters and wildlife rehabilitation centres, and spread the word about how to help animals and nature through humane education.

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