Around the world, Canada is known as a safe haven for rescued animals. Rescuers and shelters are bringing animals from faraway places to Canada where they are eventually adopted by families.

With technology, social media, and ease of communication across the world, there is definitely a heightened awareness of animal treatment and cruelty. You can now select an animal online from pictures, a profile, and in a single click order a pet which will be delivered within a week.

In fact, nearly 9 out of 10 respondents to a 2011 poll commissioned by the Canadian branch of the World Society for the Protection of Animals said they wish to “minimize and eventually eliminate all forms of animal cruelty and suffering.”

Canadians are becoming more conscious of the plight of animals as far away as places like Syria, Greece and Thailand. Animal rights groups are springing into action to bring these animals to Canada, often at great expense, air lifting hundreds of animals to new homes.

That’s not to say that Canada is perfect. After the 2010 Winter Olympics in Whistler, during a downturn in business, an owner of an outdoor adventure company killed up to a 100 dogs.

But in other parts of the wold it is far worse. In the United States nearly 60% of animals in shelters are put to death. In California alone, nearly 600 dogs are exterminated a day, and sometimes up to 6,000 a week. In Canada the statistics are much better with an average of only 14% of animals in shelters being killed.

With the plight of animals in the States, the SPCA is doing everything it can to help out. When staff at a B.C. SPCA find themselves with extra space and the opportunity to save lives, they first look locally at adjacent municipalities. Only after that, the staff then looks at other provinces or states. The SPCA uses a list of approved provinces and States when doing so to ensure the organizes are operating at the highest ethical standards and animals have the correct vaccines.

There is no doubt a spike in the number of animals coming from the States into Canada. However, the Canadian Food Inspection Agency, which regulates the importing of animals can’t say definitely how many animals cross the boarder each year.

Not everybody agrees that we should be looking for pets across the world. Groups believe that there are plenty of good dogs in Canadian shelters that need adopting and families don’t need to look across the world in order to find a pet. The Canadian Federation of Humane Societies believes the best way to help foreign animals is to donate to the local shelters so they can better deal with the problem. Only then will overpopulation be actually solved, instead of transferred to other parts of the world.

If you are considering adopting a pet from out of province then there are many things to consider. It’s important to consider the pet’s record. Where has the animal been? How was the animal treated? You want to make sure you know as much as you can about the animal’s behaviour before adoption. That way there is no surprise when your pet arrives.

If you need help with anything pet related then give us a call and we’ll be happy to help.