Annual reports

2020 Annual Report

“Over the past 151 years, we have been there alongside Quebecers and their animals through many crises. The world-wide pandemic of 2020 was another occasion for the Montreal SPCA to demonstrate our resiliency and capacity to untiringly pursue our mission, with unwavering passion and dedication.

Adapting to the unexpected is certainly central to the work of a shelter like ours, but this unprecedented crisis forced us to revisit all of our services and programs so we could continue to offer the best possible care to the animals, whose needs were very real and even multiplied this year. This reinvention would not have been possible without the outstanding ingenuity and flexibility of our various teams.”

— Élise Desaulniers, Executive Director

Thank you for your generosity

We are thrilled to announce that 28,537 individual donors and 238 charitable organizations, foundations and companies gave generously to our organization in 2020. Our monthly donation program continued to be successful, with 7,370 monthly donors.

An organization like the Montreal SPCA cannot function without the invaluable contribution of volunteers. We are fortunate to have a team of dedicated helpers who give their best and play an important role in the animals’ lives during their shelter stay. Their precious time, enthusiasm and dedication are crucial to fulfilling our mission and contribute directly to the physical and psychological well-being of our residents.


The Montreal SPCA is a registered charity that depends on donations from the public to carry out its mission.

Enhanced animal intake procedures

We revised our procedures to provide immediate assistance to animals with urgent needs and we scheduled appointments for the others. Mandatory client appointment scheduling has given us the opportunity to better understand why people part with their companion animals and to help them, through assistance and services, to keep their animals whenever possible. We saw a 30% decrease in animal admissions, compared to 2019!

New medical equipment

We acquired equipment to better care for the animals. Including better-quality dental instruments, several pumps to administer fluid therapy and an oxygen cage, these tools have taken our veterinary practices and surgeries a step further. Older animals with pathologies now have the opportunity to receive even more advanced care (the only criterion remains quality of life).

Very present foster families

The Montreal SPCA’s foster program has become a real backbone of the shelter. This was even more true during the pandemic when, in order to reduce the shelter’s occupancy rate and thus ensure compliance with social-distancing measures, we had to expand this program. Many Montréal families were willing to take in animals of any species and even with special needs. Many animals have enjoyed the peace and quiet these loving and experienced families provide.


Three cases with a happy ending

  1. When Lana, a sweet bunny, limped into the Montreal SPCA in the summer of 2020 in bad shape, our veterinary team immediately took a closer look. X-rays revealed a complete fracture of the tibia, which required her swollen, left hind leg to be amputated immediately. After a successful surgery, Lana began gaining strength. Already used to hopping around on three legs, she was soon able to live a very normal rabbit life despite the change! Lana has since been adopted with her “best bunny” Lexy, with whom she came to the shelter.

  2. Although, on average, dogs stay at the shelter for 13.8 days, Taffy was with us for two months. So she wouldn’t have to wait at the shelter, we placed her in a foster home. The behaviour our team and her foster family observed in Taffy allowed us to find her an ideal adoptive family. In fact, they wrote back saying, “Taffy is a wonderful dog and we love her very much! She is obedient, sweet, calm and affectionate. She is a perfect match and we are very happy that she is now part of our family.”

  3. In April, at the very beginning of the pandemic, a team from the Montreal SPCA went to a home to retrieve 25 cats living in unsanitary conditions. This emergency rescue was pursuant to a court decision. Many of the cats were elderly and very thin. When they arrived at the shelter, some were in such bad shape that our veterinary team had to put an end to their suffering without delay. Others had serious and painful dental problems that required urgent extractions. Despite these lengthy and complex procedures, the care our teams provided was successful and allowed these cats to live out their lives happily in their new and loving forever homes.