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File photo: Kelly Hayes - Castanet
File photo: Kelly Hayes - Castanet

Abandoned on SPCA's doorstep

by Kelly Hayes & Rachael Kimola - Story: 45137
Feb 18, 2009 / 5:00 am

It’s an all too common sight at the Kelowna SPCA, animals left in boxes waiting for shelter staff to find them in the morning.

Assistant manager, Karen Stirling, says although it’s a sight that often greets staff when they open the Casorso Road shelter in the morning, what they found on their doorstep Saturday morning was a little surprising.

“We had two boxes of animals waiting for us Saturday, one that had two cats in it and a second which had seven rabbits. We usually find cats, but not rabbits all that often,” says Sterling.

She says the rabbits, three males and four females, were all healthy, except for one.

“There were six young rabbits, maybe a few months old and an older female we think may have been the mother of the six. She was not looking very good, she had over-grown teeth and clearly hadn’t been able to eat for a while. We had to put her down. However, the young ones are all very healthy and are clearly used to people. They are very friendly. We don‘t think these were wild rabbits from Enterprise Way.”

Sterling says last year, the SPCA took in 192 stray dogs, 860 stray cats, nine rabbits, seven rodents and 16 others.

“To us, a stray is considered an animal which is not surrendered by it’s owner. It could be an animal we find on the doorstep, an animal which someone has found in the streets and brought in or in some cases, an animal found left in an apartment or house after the owner moves.”

She says finding animals abandoned in buildings is also too common an occurrence.

“People move and for whatever reason, don’t take their animal with them. We actually had a rabbit brought in just last month which had been left in an apartment. The building manager found it and brought it in.”

Sterling says there’s no need for people to leave their animals behind that way.

“We aren’t here to judge why you can’t take care of your animal. If you can’t take it, leave it with us rather than leaving it to fend for itself in an empty building.”


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