Montreal, July 4, 2013 – In 2011, a statement of offence was issued against Richard Philie, a resident of the Province of Quebec, under Article 55.9.2, AL. 3 of the Animal Health Protection Act: “As guardian of a sick or injured animal, compromised his safety or well-being by not giving him the care required by his state.”

At his trial on June 27, Mr. Philie was convicted and sentenced to a fine of $200. He is also prohibited to possess or have custody of any animal for a period of five years. All the animals that Mr. Philie owned or under his custody at the time (several cats) were confiscated on the spot and the judge ordered that they be released to Montreal’s SPCA. In his judgment, the judge severely reprimanded the accused for his neglect of the dog and questionned the veracity of his testimony.

Here is the summary of the facts:
On September 30, 2011, around 4:00 pm, an officer from the Verdun’s Surveillance Service, came at Montreal’s SPCA with a female dog – Shepherd mixed Labrador and Rottweiler – who had been found wandering by a citizen. The medals that the dog was wearing on her neck helped trace her guardian and alleged owner, Richard Philie.

Upon arrival at the SPCA, the dog was apathetic and showed signs of injury and illness. One of our inspectors, Gabriel Boudreault, asked our Chief Veterinarian, Dr. Gabrielle Carrière, to immediately conduct a medical examination of the dog. The dog was suffering from severe pain in her hips which explained her inability to walk (she made a few steps before falling back to siting or lying down). The atrophy of the thighs, the long claws and the absence of hair on the prominences of the bones are all symptoms of chronicity. In addition, she was infested with fleas and also suffered external otitis in both ears and periodontal disease. This dog was in severe pain and moving with great difficulty, while emanating complaints during the exam of her hips. Photos were taken during the medical examination (see below).

The investigation later revealed that the dog, 13-year-old, had never been examined by a veterinarian, and that months and even years of neglect were responsible for her condition. Considering the high level of pain the animal obviously endured for so long, the chronic nature of her condition, her advanced age and the very small hope of providing her with an acceptable quality of life, we unfortunately had to make the decision to procede with humane euthanasia.

“Montreal’s SPCA would like to recognize the works of the prosecutor’s office, inspector Gabriel Boudreault, as well as Dr. Gabrielle Carrière who was officially recognized as an expert witness in veterinary medicine by the judge,” said Alanna Devine, Director of animal advocacy at Montreal’s SPCA. She also added: “the efforts in this case will not only get some justice for this poor dog, but the guilty finding in this case will serve as a reference to help prevent future cases of neglect and cruelty to animals.”

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Media Contact: Alanna Devine, Director of animal advocacy at Montreal’s SPCA, 514-735-2711, ext 2245, or adevine@spcamontreal.com

About the SPCA: founded in Montreal in 1869, the Canadian Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals was the first humane society in Canada. Based on humanitarian principles, the mission of the SPCA is:

  • protect animals against negligence, abuse, and exploitation;
  • represent their interests and ensure their well-being;
  • raise public awareness and help develop compassion for all living beings

Our role is to prevent cruelty to animals by a multitude of actions. Visit our website at www.spca.com



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