OSPCA opportunism

Toronto Star‘s The Fixer isn’t surprised by controversy at OSPCA.

The Durham Region OSPCA took complaints over several years about a herd of 70 to 80 sheep suffering hoof rot, with some limping in pain, which we saw for ourselves. We also found corpses of dead sheep stashed around the property, as well as body parts from an illegal butchering operation.

The barn hadn’t been mucked out in at least four years, with the entire floor more than a metre deep in sheep dung. A well inside the barn was so contaminated from dung that the environment ministry ordered it sealed, but was still used to water the animals.

The OSPCA said the hoof rot was due to standing in boggy fields, and that it was working with the farmer to improve the health of his herd, adding he’d gone “above the call” in caring for his animals. Neighbours who complained about it were astounded.

OSPCA spokesperson Alison Cross told us it could be good for sheep to live in a barn so deep in dung that we watched one standing on a high pile bump his horns on the ceiling.

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