A Tribute to our ambassador for the fight to end breed bans

Over the past few years, Athena was the Montreal SPCA’s proud ambassador for the fight to end breed-specific legislation (BSL). If you never met her at one of our events, you probably saw her in the news or on social media. Even Pamela Anderson was her friend!


Friendly and cheerful, Athena was the perfect representative of all well-behaved dogs that could be affected by breed bans. She even touched the hearts of people who don’t particularly like dogs. In addition to being a remarkable office companion, she was loved by the entire Montreal SPCA team.

In 2013, our Investigation Department rescued Athena from a puppy mill, where she was being used for breeding. After enduring this very difficult period, she discovered years of joy and cuddles thanks to her adoptive family. She proved that with love, patience and good care, even an abused dog can become the best companion, even when it has physical characteristics resembling those of banned breeds.

Athena very recently developed health problems that quickly worsened. Unfortunately, no treatment could improve her condition. She left us peacefully, in the arms of her human “mom”, Odette, on Tuesday, September 19th, 2017.

Athena greatly contributed to demolishing the myths and prejudices surrounding dogs that could be affected by breed bans. She will remain in our hearts and will always motivate us as we work to save and defend innocent dogs.

Goodbye our beautiful Athena, and thank you for everything.



Marie-Noël Gingras

Marie-Noël Gingras works in the Department of Animal Advocacy at the Montreal SPCA. In the past few years, she has collaborated on numerous projects related to animal rights and welfare (the Vert et Fruité and Vegan Portraits blogs, the Montreal Vegan Festival), as well as collaborated with the Défi végane 21 jours book, published in spring 2016 (Éditions Trécarré). You can follow her on Facebook.

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