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“Throughout the year one animal every single day gets abandoned to the shelter so this is an ongoing issue and it’s heartbreaking,” said Anita Kapuscinska, spokesperson for the Montreal SPCA.

The Montreal SPCA has seen an increase in animal abandonments — 11,000 as of the end of September and the number is expected to reach 15,000 this year alone

Meet Moo — he’s just one of the 124 animals here ready for adoption.

A kitten is waiting to be adopted at the Montreal SPCA.
A kitten is waiting to be adopted at the Montreal SPCA.


“At the moment we’re receiving more and more animals we’re actually going back to pre-pandemic abandonment rates,” said Kapuscinska.

The SPCA says the reasons for the increase in pets being surrendered are the province’s tough housing market and the number of apartment buildings with “no-pet” restrictions.

“These aren’t people to necessarily want to part with their animals but they have to decide between a home that is affordable and keeping their animals,” said Kapuscinska.

“While 25 per cent of Quebec households have an animal at home only 4.2 per cent of landlords accept a dog without any restrictions such as the size of the dog so you can see just right there that there’s a huge problem.”


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“Another factor that we’ve noticed at the spca is that many people that have an animal aren’t necessarily able to afford veterinary care so vet fees are very expensive for families at the moment so we are receiving alos a lot of animals that require medical attention,” said Kapuscinska. “Sometimes they’re animals that have not been properly socialized during the pandemic and they have developed some behavioral issues that have to be tended to so we also try to help communities keep their animal by offering advice from a behaviorist to see if there’s ways of fixing that issue and working with the animal in order for the animal to stay with their home.”


“I make sure they have a comfortable stay as much as possible with as much love as they can get because I know it’s not easy for them necessarily being in a refuge,” said Emilie Heroux, an animal worker at the Montreal SPCA.

“Adopting is one of the best things to do but we also need to be smart about it and make sure we’re making the best choice for the animal.”

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Montreal SPCA sees rise in animal abandonment

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