Animal Welfare in Canada

Since this horrific news about the sled dogs, you have probably read the report by IFAW – which was written in 2008! Since then nothing has changed! Now why is that?

Why is this country – apparently a well developed, civilized society – has not changed its animal welfare law since 1892! Do we have an inept government here or organizations and citizens with no compassion? What is the problem? Why have we failed to protect those for over 100 years now who cannot speak for themselves?

Canada is the only country which defines animal cruelty provisions as violations of property. Animals are living, feeling beings and must be treated as we would like to be treated by them if they were in our dominant position.

What happened in Canada in April 2010 is despicable! It has sent the message to the world that we, the people living in this country, don’t care. We have failed men’s best friend.

And with that we have failed many other creatures in this country. It virtually goes unnoticed. As long as average Joe can buy a cheap burger this is a great country, right?

But did average Joe ever ask – wait a minute, where does this meat come from?

Sadly, very few think about food this way. There are millions of farm animals living under horrific conditions and die inhumanly. Many workers know about it but so far none has refused to work under these circumstances. Do you ever wonder then why someone can just kill 100 dogs because he was told to do so?

If we can’t expect, demand and actually make people run an ethically and morally sound business then we have a major problem.  Major, major problem. Apparently, ethic and moral have no place in business, right?


Any society going down this road will eventually fail. If you walk with an open eye and awareness, failing can be seen in this country already. Our democracy is diminishing through:

  • cutbacks in education
  • cutbacks in healthcare
  • criminal laws that only protect the criminals
  • virtually no protection for animals
  • poor environmental standards and
  • poor environmental protection
  • government that is corrupt on every level and
  • corrupt politicians who think they don’t have to be accountable whatsoever
  • shifting costs from business to tax payers
  • giving businesses huge tax cuts while an average family struggles day to day
  • and citizens who don’t stand up for anything and demand change

Write letters to your representative in parliament. Demand change! And if they won’t hear us then they must see us. We must protest, and peacefully so, in thousands and demand change.

Democracy is not free. So we must learn to ask some serious questions to live in a democratic society:

  • What power have you got?
  • Where did you get it from?
  • In whose interests do you exercise it?
  • To whom are you accountable?
  • How can we get rid of you?

Only democracy gives us that right. That is why no-one with power likes democracy.  And that is why every generation must struggle to win it and keep it – including you and me, here and now.

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2 Responses to Animal Welfare in Canada

  1. John says:

    I’m working my way backwards from what I believe was the most current post on the site. This is by far my favorite post. I have to admit while I was reading the other posts I was asking myself “where is the hope?” It’s here on this post.

    I must admit I don’t feel for animals as much as you or a couple of the other commentators. It might be because I didn’t grow up around animals. Got my first dog 3 or 4 years ago and I do understand the cuteness of pet to the lowering of your IQ ratio. I talk to my dog like anyone else I guess. I mention this to take note of the paradigm shift I had. Before I could vaguely understand what having a dog must mean to dog owners. But now I feel I fully understand. Sometimes I look at her and am just amazed that she’s alive and she’s thinking thoughts behind that “smooth head” of hers. Though we call her “our little sausage link” (slightly overweight) I would never sell her for food. Which made me think if I was raising cows and looked into those big cow eyeballs every day if I could send her off to slaughter; and if I did would I feel remorse.

    I’m not sure if I’ll ever feel for animals as strongly as you do but I hope I’ll be able to understand your point of view and other animal rights activists (excuse the label) a bit better. Anyways, just commenting to say that this post has sparked my hope again, which was on life support a little while ago. I’ve been working my way through a book called Griftopia by Matt Taibbi. Great book but depressing as hell. I have to take a break every once in awhile to recharge my batteries. I absolutely agree with you from a later post that it’s easier to be ignorant. It certainly feels better. I guess it’s an empathy problem. On the one hand you need to experience pain to feel pain for others (and animals) but on the other hand humans seem to have a deep aversion to pain. I’ve noticed this aversion to pain seems to have something to do with politics. After all, once someone settles on their political views it would hurt a little to consider someone else’s point of view and wonder if they might be right and you might be wrong. Or that you might both be wrong. I suppose this applies to a lot of areas of human interest (religion, pride, anything someone can form an opinion on).

    My 2 cents I suppose and thx for the hope. I really liked the questions.

    • Thank you for sharing your thoughts and reading mine. I’m glad you found some hopes through my questions.

      You also raised some interesting ideas for example: “you need to experience pain to feel pain for others” or “it’s easier to be ignorant. It certainly feels better. I guess it’s an empathy problem” and “aversion to pain seems to have something to do with politics”

      In my opinion empathy comes from understanding yourself and loving yourself. You can’t be empathetic and loving towards others if you don’t love yourself. And perhaps you are right – you need to experience pain to understand other’s pain.

      Animals have a lot to teach us, I think – but we can only learn if we listen and consider them living, feeling beings. As in my opinion they are. I don’t think they have a lesser IQ just because they can’t speak. My cats can certainly can hear, smell and see better than I can – perhaps in our world that has nothing to do with IQ but when it comes to survival, they are often smarter than us. IQ was invented by humans to categorize humans and divide us by ‘smartness’. But we still haven’t figured out how to keep our natural world in balance, ourselves in balance and curtail greed and power. We are on the path of destruction of our own species and right now taking every other creature with us. Now if you ask me that is a stupid thing to do. And I can’t call on one animal in the animal kingdom that would destroy its own habitat. We are doing just that. So who has higher IQ? 🙂

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