Animal Justice Canada is working to ensure that laws which prohibit puppy mills in Prince Edward Island are properly enforced.
Inadequate training of inspectors and a lack of enforcement of laws that protect animals are widespread problems. In Prince Edward Island, the issue came to public attention following the 2009 arrest of a pet store operator who was ultimately convicted under the Canadian Criminal Code and the provincial Companion Animal Protection Act.
The accused had operated a large scale commercial breeding operation. The trial revealed that despite almost a decade of repeated complaints, public pressure and media attention, the Department of Agriculture–responsible for enforcing theCompanion Animal Protection Act and the Animal Health and Protection Act–had made little or no effort to act. The case, and subsequent freedom of information requests (1 and 2) also revealed that government had allowed the accused to operate without a licence, inspectors responsible for enforcement had almost no training, and the department’s record keeping was inadequate.
In 2010, compelled by court criticism, significant public outrage and media attention, the Department of Agriculture committed to: (a) reviewing its training and practices; and (b) initiating consultations leading to a revision of animal protection legislation in the province. However, further media attention in the summer of 2011 revealed that no significant action had been taken to address the problems plaguing the Department of Agriculture.
Animal Justice Canada is working to help remedy this situation.