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Thank you for helping animals like Mickey!



Mickey is on the mend thanks to VHS donors!

VHS supporters may recall the story of Mickey, who suffered a broken leg and needed expensive surgery.  We’re thrilled to report that VHS supporters stepped up to the plate to ensure Mickey got the help she needed. She’s had successful surgery and is recovering well. Thank you to everyone who contributed to the effort to put Mickey back on her paws!

VHS helps many animals like Mickey through our McVitie Fund for sick and injured animals. Until January 31, 2015 your donation to the fund will be doubled. When you help us, you’re helping animals.

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Don’t forget sick and injured animals this Christmas


Our new bus shelter ad in Vancouver is a timely reminder that sick and injured animals need your help.

VHS is running the ad until January 5 to seek support for our McVitie Fund for emergency veterinary care.  With your help hundreds of animals will get desperately needed treatment and more will be spayed or neutered.

Donate Now Through!

bus shelter ad





Watch for our ad around town! Thanks to the City of Vancouver for providing ad space and to 24ptHelvetica for design.









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Op-ed: Time for Canada to be a plant-protein superpower


Our latest opinion editorial, published online in the Georgia Straight, describes the rise of the plant-based food industry and the opportunity it presents for Canadian agriculture.  It’s a ‘good news’ story – turning to plant-based foods means fewer animals living on factory farms and facing slaughter.

To see more VHS opinion pieces click here.

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Appalling cruelty in animal transport

VHS demands action from government



Undercover footage taken by Mercy for Animals/Canada revealed that Canadian Food Inspection Agency inspectors failed to stop blatant abuse of pigs being transported to slaughter in Red Deer, Alberta. VHS is calling for enforcement of existing laws and updated legislation to protect these vulnerable animals (see our letter below).

Please contact Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food, the Honourable Gerry Ritz and tell him Canadians will not tolerate this cruelty

You can also sign this petition (scroll down this link’s page to sign the petition)


October 16, 2014

The Honourable Gerry Ritz
Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food
1341 Baseline Road
Ottawa, Ontario K1A 0C5

Dear Minister Ritz,

I was appalled to see undercover video footage exposing brutal animal abuse in Canada’s livestock transportation sector. The video shows animals overcrowded in transport trucks without protection from extreme weather or access to food and water; pigs who are so sick or injured they are unable to walk being painfully shocked with electric prods; workers using bolt cutters to break the tusks of male pigs without any painkillers; and animals who were so sick they died during transport.

To see this kind of cruelty under the watch of government inspectors and sometimes even in flagrant violation of existing laws, as weak as they are, is shocking, to say the least. The video captured a CFIA inspector stating, “If anybody has a camera, this will be on the internet” and another offering to get an electric prod for an employee. It’s clear that they know that what they are doing is wrong. CFIA inspectors are there to not only protect public health, but also to enforce animal welfare legislation. I find it shameful that these kinds of atrocities could take place in a civilized country such as Canada.

Canada needs to bring itself in line with other countries with much more progressive protection for farmed animals in transport – countries like the European Union, Australia, New Zealand and the US. Legislation to protect farmed animals, who are raised, transported and slaughtered with little or no oversight, should be fast-tracked in order to ensure not only the humane community, but the public, that the government takes farmed animal welfare seriously. Lastly and most importantly, CFIA inspectors need to be properly trained to do the job they are supposed to be doing.

Judging from the number of investigations done in recent months at farms and slaughterhouses chosen at random, this seems to be the culture of these industries, rather than an anomoly. I look forward to hearing the steps the Canadian government will take to address these issues.


Debra Probert
Executive Director
Vancouver Humane Society

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No new zoo for Surrey, BC

Great news! The City of Surrey has informed the Vancouver Humane Society that in spite of news reports that the city is considering providing property at little or no cost to Cinemazoo and the Urban Safari Rescue Society for a new exotic animal zoo in Surrey, there have been no plans submitted for consideration. At this time, the concept has not been advanced as a formal proposal and even if it was, there would be a full public process before any decisions were made whether or not to support the plan.

We’ll keep you posted. Thank you for all your emails and support on this issue!

Zookeeper Gary Oliver, who has met with the City, has been keeping and renting out exotic animals like alligators and iguanas in the Lower Mainland for many years. He operates a business called Cinemazoo and claims to be concerned about conservation and habitat. Cinemazoo not only rents out animals to the entertainment industry, but takes exotic animals to private homes for birthday parties, as well as holding parties at the facility.

They also take exotics into classrooms referring to it as ‘education’, encouraging children to handle the animals. This only teaches children that animals are here for our entertainment. In 2004 and 2010 Oliver was investigated by the BC SPCA and the provincial Ministry of the Environment for concerns relating to the welfare of the animals in his care.

VHS is opposed to the keeping of exotic animals because it is impossible to provide them with a natural environment in which they can perform natural behaviours. Whether or not they were captive-bred, they have still evolved to a very specific set of environmental circumstances which is impossible to replicate in captivity. The Vancouver Humane Society contacted the City of Surrey to oppose the establishment of yet another zoo.