May 31, 2006, TORONTO – The Humane Society of Canada (HSC) is concerned about two dogs, Sooner and Shannon, who were poisoned recently in the East End of Toronto and is offering a $1,000 reward for information resulting in the conviction of those responsible for committing these cruel acts.


“While outside in their owner’s fenced-in yard last month, the two eleven-year-old Dalmatians, who were brother and sister, were fed food laced with antifreeze which contains the highly toxic substance ethylene glycol,” states Al Hickey, HSC Western Regional Director.

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

“No circumstance warrants brutally killing dogs with poison,” says Michael O’Sullivan, HSC Executive Director. “Leaving poison for dogs 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. “Offenders face maximum penalties which include fines of up to $2,000 and up to six months in jail and up to six months in jail, a criminal record and be prohibited from owner or working with animals for up to two years.”

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 Toronto Police 55 Division at 416-808-5500 or The Humane Society of Canada at 1-800-641-KIND (5463).

“The Humane Society of Canada regularly educates and alerts people about the dangers that ethylene glycol, present in antifreeze and other substances, poses to pets and wildlife," states O'Sullivan. "While poisoning from antifreeze often occurs in colder weather, The Humane Society of Canada wants to remind people that animals are susceptible to ethylene glycol poisoning in warmer weather due to cooling-system leaks in vehicles and improperly stored products containing ethylene glycol."

"By adding a bittering agent to products containing ethylene glycol, reportedly at a cost of only pennies per gallon, thousands of lives will be saved every year and an incredible amount of pain and suffering will be averted," states O'Sullivan.

Simple Ways to Protect Animals from Ethylene Glycol

  1. One of the simplest ways to prevent animals from ingesting ethylene glycol is to ensure that you store products containing this toxic substance safely and where they are inaccessible to animals and children. Ethylene glycol that is spilt must be thoroughly and immediately cleaned up.
  2. Try using less toxic products including those containing propylene glycol. If you are considering using these products in your vehicle, ensure that they will not void your vehicle's warranty.
  3. Contact car manufacturers and encourage them to use propylene glycol or bittering agents in products containing ethylene glycol.

CONTACT: Michael O'Sullivan by toll free 1-800-641-KIND or Michael on his cell phone (416) 876-9685 or at via twitter at and on Facebook at:

[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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