Home > cost of putting down a pet, family pets, putting down a pet humanely, Uncategorized > Montreal SPCA, On Jean Talon West In Montreal Not Helpful, Not Courteous And Devoid Of Compassion

Montreal SPCA, On Jean Talon West In Montreal Not Helpful, Not Courteous And Devoid Of Compassion


In His Memory.  Before sickness reduced him literally to skin and bones.

In His Memory. Before sickness reduced him literally to skin and bones.

The lady who answered the phone at the Montreal SPCA, located on Jean  Talon West in Montreal QC, was not helpful, or courteous and displayed no compassion when giving assistance and information about putting down a family pet humanely and to be quite frank was hurtful and rude. The lady must be referred to as the lady because she did  not identify herself when she answered the phone or at anytime during the conversation that followed. I understand that everyone working there, or volunteering there would like to see animals adopted rather than put down, but there are some very good reasons for putting a family pet down. I seek to remind volunteers who work at places like the Humane Society and the SPCA that for the majority of pet owners this is a stressful and heartbreaking time for them and that the choice of putting down a family pet is not arrived at easily, but as a last alternative.  I would go further and suggest  that the majority of people asking questions about how to put down an animal are trying to do the right thing and see that an animal’s suffering is ended in a humane fashion and it is to this end that this post has been written.

I was shocked and angered by the  treatment that a friend of mine received at the hands of the lady who answered the phone on  Tuesday, May 6 2014 at approximately 4pm. I was on the extension at her request, because my friend wanted to make sure that I took down the information for her, because sometimes he dyslexia causes her to write things down backwards.  All people who enquire about the cost of putting down a pet are not all people trying to rid themselves of kittens and puppies who have lost their appeal as they grew into adult animals, in fact the majority are decent caring loving pet owners who adore their pets and have considered them as members of their family and are just trying to find the best way to end the suffering of a long time companion. Others are people who have found an animal suffering in the street, or abandoned and cannot afford to take them in reasons like allergies have no choice, but to put down a sick, or injured animal and again are only trying to do the right thing and the humane thing.  Before laws were enacted declaring it illegal to take care of the matter yourself there were various methods used such as drowning, shooting, abandoning to end the life of a sick or unwanted pet.  At one time a pet owner could walk into a place like the SPCA and they would put down old suffering pets who could not be saved for a donation, or for free if you could not afford to pay.  They did not do this so much for the pet owner, but they did it so that they could be assured that the animal did not suffer and died humanely. Unfortunately this is no longer the case at the Montreal SPCA, according to the lady who answered the phone there.  I say this based on the conversation I heard while on an extension in my friend’s house between my friend  and the lady she talked to at the Montreal SPCA.

The problem for my friend started when her aunt of 92 was rushed to the hospital some time ago and was diagnosed as being unable to live alone anymore and was placed in a nursing home.  The nursing home did not allow pets.  Her aunt’s sickly 19-year-old cat would have been tossed into the street and left to die a horrible death due to his age, poor health and the fact that he had no claws, had my friend not stepped in to help out while there was a possibility that her aunt might return to her home.  The young lady  took care of the cat in her aunt’s house changing the litter, water and feeding, but when the aunt was placed in the nursing home, my friend being allergic  to cats could not take the cat in and so sought to have the very old sickly cat humanely put down.  The cat was urinating at a very high rate, its stool smelled worse that anything I have ever smelled from a cat, it staggered when it walked and could not even jump up onto the sofa and from the looks of things it vomited up at least twice a day.  It was clear that to keep this cat alive was cruel and not a humane thing to do. My friend is on welfare and quickly discovered that the price of putting down this cat humanely at a vet was anywhere from $90 to $200 and way out of her budget.  Her aunt suffers from dementia and does not remember even owning a cat and so will not pay for the putting down of the suffering animal.  The lady on the other end of the phone line at the Montreal SPCA was unmoved by this story and instead told my friend, “You should have listened to the recording while you were on hold, because you would have understood that because the cat is from the borough of Lasalle, the Montreal SPCA will  have nothing to do with it in any way.”  “You will to seek help with your problem at a vet and your financial situation is neither my or the Montreal SPCA’s problem.” Tempers flared and the frustration of my friend showed when she said, “I will put the cat in its box and leave it on your doorstep and you can do for it what you like,” to which the lady from the SPCA replied, “Are you threatening me?”  My friend now livid said, “Thank you very much for nothing” and hung up the phone.

I am an animal lover, but I am not a rich person either and for a moment in time we contemplated what to do with this 19-year-old sick and suffering cat, that the Montreal SPCA would not help us with and that we could not afford to take to the vet.  We thought of all the old ways of putting down pets and read still others online that were quite new, if not painless and therefore not very humane and definitely not legal.  God must have been listening, because when she went to check on the cat today, she found it dead and suffering no more.  What we will never know is how much that poor cat suffered that night and for how many nights, because there is just no way for a person down on their luck to do the right thing.  How many pets have had to endure home remedies and painful deaths because pet owners call a place like the Montreal SPCA and are treated like criminals and are out right refused help?  Should only those with money be able to have a pet? I believe that if the government is going to insist that pets such as dogs and cats are put down by vets then they must assure that the means to do so is there for everyone and at a rate that all can afford, or many pets will suffer at the hands of normally loving caring people trying to do what they think is the right thing in the only manner left to them.

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