Without prejudice By email and registered mail
28th March 2011
Premier Ed Stelmach
Office of the Premier
307 Legislature Building
10800 - 97 Avenue
Edmonton, AB T5K 2B6
Re: Guzoo Farm - Licensed by the Government of Alberta as a Zoo and Animal Sanctuary, Three Hills, Alberta
Dear Premier Stelmach,
I am writing to you in my capacity as Chairman & CEO of The Humane Society of Canada on behalf of the millions of Albertans and many others from around the world who share our concern about the protection of animals.
We appreciated the opportunity to speak with the senior staff in the Premier's Office earlier today, and this confirms our written request for an immediate high level expert investigation concerning allegations about the welfare of animals under the ownership, custody and control of those in charge of operating the Guzoo Farm. We also require assurances that following a professional veterinary examination of all animals that they receive immediate veterinary care and treatment, rather than being euthanized. Attached is the Facebook link reportedly showing pictures of animals at the facility, and the best way to ensure the safety of these animals is to carry out an immediate on site investigation.
As their website indicates http://www.guzooforever.com/ is licensed by the Government of Alberta not only to care for exotic species but wildlife species native to Alberta as well. We are aware that this requires special permits and routine inspections by your staff. As you can see from Guzoo Farm's website, they describe their facility as the largest private zoo in Canada. Other reported allegations indicate that since they were first registered in 1990, your staff have delivered animals to their care and inspected them without finding any problems.
Under federal criminal law in Canada, since 1892, every animal must be provided with suitable and adequate food, water, shelter and care. Upon conviction forfailing to do so, penalties include jail time, a criminal record,fines, any other conditions imposed by the court, including an order prohibiting the accused from owning or working with animals. Under a number of provincial laws in Alberta, similiar requirements exist along with attendant penalties. These penalties can be levied for each and every single count proven that results in a conviction.
Over the past 40 years, I have worked across Canada and in over 110 countries around the world with a wide range of law enforcement agencies at every level of government including the RCMP, the FBI and INTERPOL. I hold a BSc in Agriculture and another three years of post-graduate studies, have extensive field experience with domestic animals and wildlife and have been involved in conducting several thousand investigations. Our concerns are based upon that hard won experience.
We look forward to advising concerned Albertans and others who care about animals along with the media about the positive steps you are taking to resolve these very serious allegations.
Awaiting your reply, I remain, yours sincerely,
Chairman & CEO
The Humane Society of Canada