Ottawa

Ottawa couple faces animal cruelty charges

An Ottawa couple faces a hefty fine and up to two years in jail for failing to obtain proper care for their dog.

An Ottawa couple faces a hefty fine and up to two years in jail for failing to obtain proper care for their dog.

Bruce Roney, executive director of the Ottawa Humane Society, said a couple could face up to two years in jail after they failed to provide adequate care for their Black Lab. ((Ottawa Humane Society))

Ottawa Humane Society officials said Wednesday the couple brought their dog to the Humane Society saying they thought she had broken her hip two weeks earlier. They claimed they had not obtained earlier treatment due to financial reasons.

However, the examining veterinarian determined that the five-year-old Black Lab had advanced cancer and was likely sick for at least a month. The pet was also underweight, had mobility problems, a severe urinary tract infection and was in a significant amount of pain. The vet was forced to euthanize her.

OHS Inspectors charged the couple under the Ontario Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act and could face a maximum fine of $60,000, and two years in jail.

A court date is scheduled for April 21, 2011.

"Providing veterinary care is a legal requirement for pet owners. If veterinary care is not affordable, people may choose to surrender their pets to the OHS," said Bruce Roney, executive director of the Ottawa Humane Society.

"Our goal is to educate people to help them be better owners to their pets; however, owners are not exempt from legal charges if they take no steps to provide veterinary treatment when their pet is suffering."

Roney added "our community has made it clear that it will simply not tolerate cases of animal abuse or neglect."

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