23 dogs returned to man facing charges from Alberta SPCA; 129 up for adoption
More than 100 dogs that were seized from a property in southern Alberta’s Vulcan County more than two months ago are now being adopted out to homes.
The Alberta SPCA took over 200 animals into protective custody on April 24: 131 dogs, 62 rabbits, eight cats and three tortoises. Since being taken from the property, several of the dogs and rabbits have given birth.
Two of the dogs seized in the case also had parvovirus and had to be put down in April. A third dog tested positive but was in the early stages and was treated at an off-site clinic.
As of Monday, 129 of those dogs are in the custody of the Calgary Humane Society and Alberta Animal Rescue Crew Society (AARCS), where they’ve been cared for since being seized. The pets will soon be available for adoption.
Several animals returned to owner
The SPCA said 23 of the dogs, as well as 17 rabbits, eight cats and two tortoises, have been returned to the property of Ty Marshall, who is facing animal cruelty charges in relation to the seizure.
Those animals were returned in accordance with county bylaws, which states an owner can only have three adult dogs on their property. The other 20 animals are under 12 months old, meaning they’re not covered by the bylaw.
The other animals involved in the seizure are also not covered under the bylaw. They have been returned in compliance with a consent order, which takes into account the space, staffing and a person’s experience with caring for the animals.
“The consent order does include some things that he has to do, and he’s supposed to provide us with documentation,” Lines said. That includes veterinary visits and vaccinations.”
He said the SPCA will be keeping an eye on the property to ensure those animals are safe and cared for.
“Certainly we’re not just going to ignore the property,” he said.
“Because it’s a property where animals have been sold, then under the animal protection act we do have the right to inspect the property, we will use that to make sure he stays in compliance with the consent order.”
Animals needed extensive care
Lines said caring for the animals has cost the SPCA more than $300,000, which includes veterinary care as well as compensating the animal shelters that took them in. The SPCA also had to rent completely separate space to house the rabbits because there were so many.
“We’re glad to be able to care for the animals but it is a financial burden that we were forced to hold on them for so long before they were able to be put up for adoption,” Lines said.
It’s still not known what will be done to adopt out the rabbits that the SPCA is still caring for.
The Calgary Humane Society said in a post on its Facebook page that the dogs won’t be able to be adopted out right away. Staff has asked people who are interested to keep an eye on their website for updates.
“We weren’t able to keep all of the animals and sadly due to a bylaw technicality, some will have to be returned to Mr. Marshall,” the post reads.
Many of the dogs required extensive veterinary care and weren’t very well socialized, according to AARCS. The organization said the dogs they took in needed treatment for dental disease, eye infections, mammary tumours, enlarged prostates and skin issues from matted fur, among many other issues.
A Global News request to Marshall was not immediately answered.
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