The Montreal SPCA Applauds Bill 67, Tabled Yesterday by the Hon. Sonia LeBel, MNA 

Press release — for immediate release 

The Montreal SPCA Applauds Bill 67, Tabled Yesterday by the Hon. Sonia LeBel, MNA 

There is light at the end of the tunnel for access to veterinary care 


Montréal, June 5, 2024 – The Montreal SPCA is pleased by the major advances of Bill 67, which was tabled yesterday by the Hon. Sonia LeBel, Minister Responsible for Government Administration and Chair of the Conseil du trésor. Among its major contributions if passed, the bill will enable veterinarians working for non-profit organizations to provide their services directly to the public—marking a significant improvement in public access to veterinary care.  

The sad situations we see on the ground may just change! 

“Imagine a family whose companion animal has a serious medical emergency,” Laurence Massé, Executive Director of the Montreal SPCA, says. “After consulting a vet, they learn treatment is indeed possible and the prognosis is even good. But it’s going to cost a few hundred or maybe even thousands of dollars. If the family can’t pay or get a loan, they have a terrible choice to make: Will they let their animal suffer? Will they request euthanasia? Or will they surrender their animal to a shelter to make sure their companion gets the veterinary care they need?”  

The issue is that shelter vets are not allowed to serve the public directly: the family must have officially surrendered their animal for a shelter vet to be able to provide treatment. In other words, shelter vets can only treat animals who will not be going back to their family and who will be put up for adoption. But this is a vicious cycle, since a new family may eventually be forced to surrender the animal in turn should another costly medical emergency occur…  

For many years now, the Montreal SPCA has been advocating for a revision of the Professional Code. Veterinarians working in NPOs should be allowed to provide veterinary care directly to the public. Yesterday, the tabling of Bill 67 was a concrete step toward making this service possible. “We are convinced that these new measures will greatly benefit animals and families in Quebec,” says Ms. Massé. 

One in six animals abandoned for medical reasons 

Ms. Massé goes on to remind us that the inability to pay for an animal’s veterinary care is the cause of one in six abandonments at the shelter. “In the first four months of 2024 alone, over 166 animals were abandoned for this reason. This sad situation could be avoided if our veterinarians were allowed to serve the public directly. We have the resources and expertise, but our hands are tied by the Professional Code.” 

The Montreal SPCA will continue to closely follow the evolution of Bill 67and work with other players to make sure all animals in Quebec have access to veterinary care without their families being forced to surrender them. 

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Source: Montreal SPCA 

About the Montreal SPCA 
Founded in Montréal in 1869, the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (now known simply as the Montreal SPCA) was the first animal welfare organization in Canada. The SPCA has come a long way since: it is now the largest animal welfare organization in Quebec and speaks on behalf of animals wherever there is ignorance, cruelty, exploitation or neglect. 

Media information:

Tök communications 514-247-0526 
Élodie Létourneau-Venne, elodie@tokcommunications.ca 
Marie-Hélène Avon, mariehelene@tokcommunications.ca 


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