Tbnewswatch Local News
Tuesday June 30 2015
5:58 AM EDT
2014-04-10 at NOON

Over capacity

Leith Dunick, tbnewswatch.com
By Leith Dunick, tbnewswatch.com

Cat owners looking to get rid of their pet are being warned to expect up to a $75 drop-off fee at the Thunder Bay and District Humane Society.

Melanie Blanchette, executive director of the animal shelter, says the springtime melt has landed an influx of cats on their doorstep, leaving them beyond capacity.

The no-kill organization, which relies solely on donations for its day-to-day survival, has been forced to keep the excess felines in bathrooms and offices, simply can’t afford to take the animals in for free.

The decision has led to a number of angry confrontations with members of the public hoping to walk away from their animals or turn in strays.

“With the warm weather comes a number of intakes,” Blanchette said.

“I don’t know if it’s the fact strays are more visible or more rampant, but as of this week we are at capacity, where prior to this week we were not.

“So what we would like the public to know is that we have a bring-in fee, a drop-off fee for animals.”

The $100 is only a fraction of the cost it takes to care for each cat, including de-worming, shots, ridding them of ear mites, micro-chipping and spaying or neutering operations.

Then there’s food.

“It allows us to offset some of the cost. When people are bringing in strays from the public, it does cost us a number of fees medically,” Blanchette said.

“That costs us anywhere from $500 to $600, depending on the gender of the cat.”
The fee is lowered to $50 for animals that have been fixed.

Blanchette, who is hoping to adopt out as many of the animals in her care as possible, wanted to remind the public that if they take an animal into their care it becomes their responsibility under the law.

She’s trying to discourage people from covertly dropping animals off in the middle of the night, noting their Rosslyn Road shelter property is equipped with security cameras and if an animal is simply left behind, every effort will be made to track down the owner.

Blanchette said while the TBDHS is back in the black financially, they’re still looking for more donors to help the cause.


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pc says:
Try to remember this and not give a pet to a small child. Easter is a great time for pet giving from the Easter Bunnie.
Remember they take work and children do not realize this so it is up to the parent to do the work.
It is not fair to the animal or the family.
4/15/2014 10:52:39 AM
Pandora says:
Just in the last week I have seen 4 new cat, of the reproducing age in and across my neighbourhood. These cats are going to be having litters 'then what'?
4/14/2014 6:59:33 PM
joey joe joe jr. shabadoo says:
This drop-off fee at the Thunder Bay and District Humane Society will only make more people abandon their animals on the streets or in the country to avoid the $75 fee in the future.

4/11/2014 2:23:50 AM
alrightythen says:
this breaks my heart. I would take all the cats home with me if I could. Was there today, they are all such sweethearts...hope they find homes soon.
4/10/2014 9:08:03 PM
unknowncronik says:
to curb the issue, it seems the time for leash & roaming laws to kick in for cats too then??

or does that make too much sense?

the local exterminators would become very busy
4/10/2014 7:27:39 PM
NowayJose says:
A Dog's Prayer
Treat me kindly, my beloved master, for no heart in all the world is more grateful for kindness than the loving heart of me.
Do not break my spirit with a stick, for though I should lick your hand between the blows, your patience and understanding will more quickly teach me the things you would have me do.
Speak to me often, for your voice is the world's sweetest music, as you must know by the fierce wagging of my tail when your footstep falls upon my waiting ear.
When it is cold and wet, please take me inside... for I am now a domesticated animal, no longer used to bitter elements... and I ask no greater glory than the privilege of sitting at your feet beside the hearth... though had you no home, I would rather follow you through ice and snow than rest upon the softest pillow in the warmest home in all the land... for you are my god... and I am your devoted worshiper.
Keep my pan filled with fresh water, for although I should not reproach you were it dry, I cannot tell you when I suffer thirst. Feed me clean food, that I may stay well, to romp and play and do your bidding, to walk by your side, and stand ready, willing and able to protect you with my life, should your life be in danger.
And, beloved master, should the Great Master see fit to deprive me of my health or sight, do not turn me away from you. Rather hold me gently in your arms as skilled hands grant me the merciful boon of eternal rest...and I will leave you knowing with the last breath I drew, my fate was ever safest in your hands.
--Beth Norman Harris
4/10/2014 7:25:12 PM
YellowSnow13 says:
I want to get this straight. A cat runs free in my neighborhood. I catch it. And I have to pay to drop it off at the shelter. What if the owner is looking for their lovely little kitty and get it back because I turned it in. Do they pay another $100 to bail it out? What is anybody's incentive to be nice to the cat? It's obvious the owner doesn't care or the cat would not be loose. I like animals. I don't want to harm animals. Maybe when the day comes that an owner spends some time in a cell for their loose little precious pussy, things will change. As for now I guess the finder of a cat still pays for for actions of bad pet owners.
4/10/2014 4:23:41 PM
S Duncan says:
We should shut it down so we could have more money available for the "events" center.
4/10/2014 4:16:50 PM
thunderbaycouncel says:
The Humane Society is RIGHT! They should charge for this! One of the main reasons people drop off animals there is because they are not small and cuet anymore. Sounds weird? its true. many people love having baby cats and dogs but once they get older they are too much to handle. True fact. they should actually increase the price of this service!
4/10/2014 2:27:48 PM
nat_geo says:
Its actually dumb of them to charge for this. Again, it shows how out of touch they are. Generally people who don't want their pet will not pay a fee to do so and will "get rid" of it any way they can, whether its through classified ads, facebook, rescue groups or dumping it on the streets.

Rescue's don't charge a "drop-off" fee and you don't hear them complaining about it.

Now that Kijiji no longer provides *free* pet-dumping services we can expect to see an influx in unwanted animals being abandoned on our city streets.
4/10/2014 4:20:23 PM
nat_geo says:
The annual operating costs of the TBay & District Humane Society exceed that of all the rescues (for both dogs and cats) combined. Rescues take in and adopt out more dogs annually, and feline groups like Kitty Kare could do so much more if they had access to the funds being wasted on Humane Society employees. Those involved in rescue, from the owners/operators to fosters and caregivers, are people who volunteer their time and resources because they care about animals. There are no paycheques involved.

The whole "Humane Society" concept is outdated. Caging animals for months/years on end in a shelter environment is akin to cruelty itself. Yes, we need an OSPCA inspector for animal cruelty complaints but that can be run from a smaller facility with an office and room to house the dozen or so animals seized from cruelty/neglect cases.

The Humane Society's aging board of directors need to get with the times. Work with the community, not against it, and put money to better use.
4/10/2014 1:13:12 PM
reese says:
Free spay and neuter clinics is a good start to help cure the problem
I have found many a stray over the years and brought tham to the clinic for free shots also
Much easier to find a home for them
If you do not charge for the pet it could be used as bait animal
4/10/2014 1:10:02 PM
tadzup says:
Shocking, the humane society looking for MORE money. I don't know why this is "news" anymore. Private rescues do a lot better work with a lot less money.
4/10/2014 12:39:34 PM
ranma says:
What kind of heartless human would complain about handing over an animal to someone to take care of and to ensure it has a chance to live. Oh yeah..the self centered types that apparently make up the majority of the population of Thunder Bay.

Pretty sad when all this fee will probably do, is force these heartless individuals to dump their cats out in the country, or worse drown them. :( Imagine what would happen if you could do this to your kids!

And for those of you wondering..since this website has such intelligent individuals, some people look at their pets as their fur kids. They will treat them just as any other member of the family. After all, animals will give you unconditional love. You treat them well, and they will ALWAYS be happy to see you, and will love you till the day they die. Unlike your children haha :)
4/10/2014 12:26:40 PM
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