SD&G #OSPCA Refuse Abandoned Cat in Cornwall. By Jamie Gilcig JUNE 15, 2017

Cornwall Ontario – As most people know I am an animal lover.   I rescued a senior cat at a shelter who was about to be euthanized for being anti-social.  Sure enough the first thing he did was bite me.  That’s old man Sam pictured above with his little brother Fitzy the Wiener Dog!

I fought for him and they agreed that if I had him fixed I could take him home   They said he was eight to ten at the time, and that was 17 years ago!

Sam is now an old man.   But if it wasn’t for that shelter taking him in, even if for awhile before making the decision to euthanize him, even though he was healthy, would he still be alive today?

Politics and money sadly rule the OSPCA it seems.   I could be totally wrong, but this isn’t the first time I’ve had to write about the local branch turning away a stray or abandoned cat that is exposed to the elements.

That can only lead to more cats, illness, suffering and many times of course, the death of an innocent animal.

Isn’t the entire purpose of the SPCA to take in animals, crowded or not, and do the best they can?   People complain about “Kill” shelters, but wouldn’t it be more humane to euthanize an animal than leave it exposed to the elements and streets?

Diane Leslie, of Long Sault called us today stating how upset she was that after spending a week trying to coax a hung cat out of its hiding place and driving over 30 minutes to the SD&G OPSCA branch that they refused the cat.

She said that she’d looked up their website for their operating hours and that there was no message stating that it was full or that they wouldn’t take a cat.   The hard working feline lover took the poor black and orange cat that she estimated to be about six months to the shelter and even offered to pay a $30 abandonment fee, but the shelter said it was full and suggested that they simply put the cat back where she found it.

That’s the not first time I’ve been told that from a CFN viewer.  Sadly it probably won’t be the last.

Diane opened the crate and let the cat out in the office.  She said that the workers protested and said she could get charged by police for abandoning the animal, but she said it wasn’t hers and walked out.

Ms Leslie said that she pleaded with three workers at the shelter, but to no avail.  She told this writer that she didn’t understand that after years of supporting the OSPCA that the first time she encountered them for something, this would be her experience and she said she no longer wants to support them.

We reached out to Alison Cross at OSPCA headquarters in Toronto and she sent a statement back for publication.

Hi Jamie,

As there are no municipal animal control bylaws in the region that pertain to cats, anyone looking to rehome a cat, whether owned or as a stray, are provided by the Ontario SPCA with a variety of options available to help assist in the rehoming. The Ontario SPCA SD&G Animal Centre does offer a waitlist as an option to anyone that contacts us to rehome an animal. If this option is not wanted by the individual other options are encouraged.

Alison Cross

Director, Marketing & Communications

Ontario SPCA, Provincial Office

That was a bit boggling to me so I sent her a few follow up questions.

Hi Alison,

Can you confirm what happened at the affiliate as I described to you in our phone call?    What is a person to do with a cat that is being a nuisance or is in danger then?

Are you confirming that the OSPCA will turn animals away if the space is full as this person has alleged, and can you tell me what happened to the cat she left in the SD&G office? 

I need to know what to let the public know as most people think that the OSPCA is there to take in abandoned animals without waiting lists or appointments and why isn’t that info on your website as in this case it would’ve saved this woman a 30 minute trip?
Her response was that I had her statement.
Clearly all communities need an animal control officer and a safe place for animals with no home.   Besides the important factor that so many of us truly care about animals; some even more than our fellow humans, there are health and safety issues as well to be considered.
People donate and support the OSPCA, but surely more needs to be done if they are turning away animals?   Surely there are other OSPCA affiliates, shelters and rescues that if the SD&G branch was full that they could find even temporary solutions with rather than telling the public to put an animal back into the open without food or proper shelter?   Because in this writer’s opinion we don’t need the OSPCA to be subsidized to so.  It makes little to no sense.  No animal should be turned away by any branch of the OSPCA.
Of course I could be wrong.   It could just be silly local politics and the city and counties simply not coughing up enough cash to help the local branch, but if that’s the case it should be public because cats count as much as dogs and can have a larger health impact on the public.
Ms Cross refused to answer, but I’m hoping that the Black and Orange cat is safe and will be available for adoption soon.
Surely SD&G & Cornwall need a real solution for animal control and protection.   Oddly enough the OSPCA will charge you and remove your animal when you don’t take care of it, but seem to be ok with leaving a cat in a dangerous feral situation?   That makes no sense?
What do you think dear CFN viewers?  You can post your comments below.



  1. My son called them last week. Someone dropped of a cat, and it was terrified. Climbed up a 35′ tree. They had to get it down. He’s friendly so he was someones pet. He’s covered in pine sap. He called OSPCA and wanted to bring it in, they refused. Said he would have to make an apt. weeks down the road for drop off. It’s NOT his cat. His g/f hates cats. It’s a stray someone dropped off obviously.

  2. Jamie there are tons of feral cats at the back of the Parliament Bldgs. and I think that Ottawa has the same problem. Now if only I can take the #1 feral cat out of the Parliament Bldgs. and sell him it would be a God sent. You are the best with animals and I can see my little friend Fitzy very happy – you are the best Jamie in everything. People like that will abuse kids as well.

  3. Author

    Jules when you come down the market I’ll bring Fitzy down to meet you.

  4. Jamie hubby and I love animals especially dogs and we would love to meet Fitzy. I have a magnetic thing on my fridge that a man gave me last week of his dog which is the kind that you would see on the Dukes of Hazard – a Beagle and he is from Edmonton Alta and his wife works at Carleton University. We sure meet some very nice people on our walks. We miss one elderly man very much.

  5. Jamie it would be an honor to meet you and Fitzy and I mean that. You are a very good person and I wish that the people in Cornwall would see that. I went to school (French system) with Daniel Bellemare a lawyer from Cornwall who is part owner of Farmboy and I wish that those people would support you. I lost touch with everyone in Cornwall.

  6. Back in the late 1970’s era I met Daniel (par hazard) meaning by accident. I was going on Slater St. and O’Connor to catch my bus to come home and Daniel and I met one another crossing the street. It is too bad that we didn’t have time to talk. Daniel was studying law here in Ottawa. I wish that Farmboy and others would support you.

  7. Author

    Jules when someone buys an ad it’s not just supporting CFN and the community, but it’s the best value to help build and promote their business in the area. It’s a win win relationship. Since the City Hall led boycott look at what’s happened to the local economy.

  8. That is such a beautiful picture of my little friend Fitzy with the new cat. My neighbor Pina said that her dog was whining all night and didn’t want to stay downstairs in his little bed but wanted upstairs. I asked her this morning if her dog wasn’t feeling well and she said that he seems ok. Animals have a lot of things like people – maybe he just wanted to crawl in with her and her hubby.

  9. When any level of government interferes in business things go downhill. Business taxes are mighty high and a great deal higher than what people pay on their homes. The rents for business here in Ottawa is astronomical and a tiny corner not big enough for more than 2 people cost well over $3K a month back in the late 70’s at Billings Bridge. Always stores coming and going here.

  10. Jamie if I manage to come down to that market in Long Sault how do I get there from Ottawa. I looked at a map of where the market is supposed to be and something about Old Post Road (the former name) and I know to pass Upper Canada Village and that is as far as I know. I have to ask before I get lost on the country roads. Maybe I would be the first for that to happen to. LOL LOL.

  11. Jamie that would make a great story about your wacky Jules getting lost on the country roads looking for the country store. LOL LOL. I just thought of a good wacky story. ROLF!

  12. Author

    Jules if you go to google maps and click directions it’ll get you right to the front door. Or you just drive to Cornwall, take Hw2 to Long Sault, hang a right at the town hall and then take a right at the road after you pass the town hall. There should be signs.

  13. Thanks Jamie. What we will do is take Highway 31 where Finley Creek is located and go all the way down to Morrisburg, turn left and lead ourselves to Long Sault and find the road by turning left. You and little Fitzy and everyone would have a good laugh. I will look at the google maps to make sure that we get to the right spot. Hubby has one of those electronic maps in the car.

  14. There should always be space for abandoned animals and people should adopt pets out of the OSPCA. Jamie you are a wonderful person to take in animals and the best of care and little Fitzy is a very happy dog. The great care that you give your pets shows and what kind of a good person that you are.

  15. That 17 year old cat may feel a lot better than I do at 66. LOL LOL. The weather is so changeable that it is making me feel weak. The same with my husband. LOL LOL. My little Fitzy is so mighty cute Jamie. You are so lucky because animals are faithful and lovely to have as friends. Animals are the best and you have the best of the lot.

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