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Minister’s Refusal to Act May Lead to Killing of 21 Dogs

March 22, 2016

Queen’s Park – The fates of 21 dogs seized from a dogfighting ring in Chatham-Kent may have been sealed after the Minister of Community Safety and Correctional Services Yasir Naqvi again refused to grant a special designation for a King City animal rescue to take in the dogs.

“The animal sanctuary Dog Tales Rescue has offered to take them in immediately as an interim measure, at no cost to the province. But they need the Minister’s help because they require his approval to take in the dogs.” Nicholls said.

“Will the Minister move quickly and grant a special designation to Dog Tales Rescue to give these suffering dogs a second chance at life?” Nicholls asked.

In his responses to numerous questions on this issue the Minister has claimed that because the matter is before the courts he does not have the authority to help, which Nicholls says is misleading and inaccurate.

“This government just doesn’t get it. Minister, you do have the authority to help,” Nicholls pleaded. “The Dog Owner’s Liability Act permits these dogs to be given to a designated body. In other words, your Ministry’s approval is all that is required.”

The judge overseeing the case has stated a willingness to entertain the notion of transferring the dogs, but is concerned over the legality of moving the dogs to a non-OSPCA facility due to the province’s controversial ban on pit-bull type dogs. This is why the Minister’s approval is required for Dog Tales Rescue to save the dogs.

“If the Minister was paying attention to this issue, he would know that he needs to grant this special designation so the Rescue can save the dogs.” Nicholls said. “There’s a perfect solution to this issue that can save the dogs’ lives while keeping them away from the public in case there are safety concerns. But the Minister is refusing to act and that may sadly lead to the death of these dogs.”

MPP Nicholls reached out to the Executive Director of the OSPCA to provide an update on the health of the dogs and allow him to see their current living conditions firsthand. To date, the agency has yet to return his call.

“This is before a judge at the moment, but if the Minister refuses to help these dogs and grant this designation he may end up being their executioner,” Nicholls concluded.