New Brunswick SPCA reports ‘dramatic increase’ in abandoned pet cases

Fred­er­ic­ton, New Brunswick – The New Brunswick SPCA is alarmed at the increase in the num­ber of aban­doned pets being left behind after pet own­ers vacate their res­i­dence. In 2023, the NBSP­CA received 312 reports of pets being aban­doned at New Brunswick homes and apart­ments, com­pared to 141 in 2022.

Pet own­ers are respon­si­ble for the well-being of their ani­mals. Your pet needs you and looks to you for sup­port, pro­tec­tion, and care,” said Les­ley Rogers, exec­u­tive direc­tor of the New Brunswick SPCA. Please don’t leave your pets behind, they deserve bet­ter from you.”

Tony Porter, Chief Ani­mal Pro­tec­tion offi­cer for the NBP­SCA, said an animal’s phys­i­cal con­di­tion can quick­ly dete­ri­o­rate if left with­out food, water, or shel­ter. Dogs and cats can start to show signs of dehy­dra­tion after only 24 hours. In some of our recent calls for aban­doned ani­mals, the NBSP­CA res­cued ani­mals in very poor phys­i­cal con­di­tion and trag­i­cal­ly also found deceased animals. 

NBSP­CA ani­mal pro­tec­tion offi­cers are see­ing more aban­doned pets because of finan­cial and hous­ing issues. Since many apart­ment build­ings do not allow pets in rental agree­ments, own­ers some­times leave their pets behind when they move. Oth­er own­ers become over­whelmed with the cost of food and vet­eri­nar­i­an care. 

There are oth­er solu­tions beside aban­don­ing your pets. Own­ers can reach out for help from friends or fam­i­ly mem­bers to help rehome their pets. Rehom­ing a pet with peo­ple you asso­ciate with makes for an eas­i­er tran­si­tion for the ani­mal,” Rogers said. Anoth­er option would be to reach out to your local SPCA Ani­mal Shel­ter, local Cat/​Dog Res­cue group or the NBSP­CA. These pro­fes­sion­als can help by either tak­ing in the ani­mal or giv­ing you options that would keep your pet safe while look­ing for a new home.

Own­ers of aban­doned pets can face charges under the SPCA Act, result­ing in fines, a crim­i­nal record, and Pro­hi­bi­tion Orders pre­vent­ing them from own­ing pets. Pet own­ers who do not pro­vide shel­ter and fail to pro­vide med­ical care to their ani­mals can face seri­ous con­se­quences,” Porter said.

In oth­er cas­es, Porter said own­ers are drop­ping their dog or cat off along remote areas of the province, let­ting them loose to fend for them­selves. The aban­doned ani­mal faces hunger, dehy­dra­tion or being severe­ly injured by wild ani­mals or cars. 

These aban­doned pets are scared when left on their own to sur­vive. They no longer have the pro­tec­tion and sup­port from their own­ers which caus­es fear and stress on the ani­mal,” Porter said. 

If you have con­cerns that an ani­mal has been aban­doned, neglect­ed, or abused please call our 247 # 18777221522.

About New Brunswick SPCA

Found­ed in 1881, New Brunswick SPCA (NBSC­PA) is the only province-wide orga­ni­za­tion man­dat­ed to enforce ani­mal pro­tec­tion laws. A ded­i­cat­ed team of 15 Ani­mal Pro­tec­tion Offi­cers is vest­ed with the author­i­ty under the SPCA Act of New Brunswick to inves­ti­gate and, if nec­es­sary, lay charges, seize ani­mals, or rec­om­mend court orders to per­sons sus­pect­ed of abuse and cru­el­ty to animals. 

The NBSP­CA is a reg­is­tered char­i­ty that exists to pro­vide province-wide lead­er­ship in the humane treat­ment of ani­mals. We enforce rel­e­vant leg­is­la­tion, ensure shel­ter for neglect­ed or abused domes­ti­cat­ed ani­mals and agri­cul­tur­al ani­mals, and pro­vide pub­lic edu­ca­tion and advo­ca­cy to empow­er New Brunswick­ers to help ani­mals live long and healthy lives. 

To learn more vis­it nbsp​ca​.ca

Media Con­tact:

Mir Hyder

Mar­ket­ing and Com­mu­ni­ca­tions Manager

New Brunswick SPCA


Avail­able for Interview:

Les­ley Rogers

Exec­u­tive Director

New Brunswick SPCA


Tony Porter

Chief Ani­mal Pro­tec­tion Officer

New Brunswick SPCA

Sign Up For Our Newsletter

Stay up-to-date on the latest news from the NBSPCA and learn more about how you can support animals in need.