Thursday, July 2, 2009


If anyone's happened to look at the TAS website recently, you might have noticed that there are zero dogs up for adoption. Now if I were the world's bestest optimist, I might think that all the dogs have been adopted out but, well, I'm not. So, I decide to do some digging to find out where they all are or at least try to.

This turns out to be even more convoluted than the time I tried to get some information about my Roger's home phone bundle.

First I phone the main TAS line and ask for the telephone number of the north shelter. The guy tells me that since they're not answering the phones up there, he can't give me the number.

Okay, so what's with these public agencies not answering their phones? Last week, it was some office of the court. Now it's the north shelter. Did some memo go out to city employees who deal with the public that dealing with the public is no longer a job requirement? Or maybe it's me. Maybe they've got my name on a no-phone list. Everytime a name from the list shows up on a city line, the person is automatically transferred to the guy whose job is to say that the party the caller's trying to reach hasn't got a phone.

Anyway, the guy asks me if he can help so I explain to him that I'm trying to track down a few of the dogs who were originally at TAS South and who were subsequently transferred up to TAS North for the strike. He asks for their ID numbers, which I don't have but I give him their names instead. Then he asks for my contact info. Then he tells me he can try to track down these dogs but that it would take him a very long time. And then he emphasizes, A very very long time.

Uh huh.

Well, at least he's honest.

Never mind then, I say, I'll go up there myself on the weekend.

Oh but they might not be there, he says.

They've been adopted? I ask.

No, they might be in Hamilton, he says. He tells me that TAS has been shipping dogs out to Hamilton. He tells me that I should phone Hamilton and if I can't find what I'm looking for, I can call him back and he'll try to help me then.

But it'll still take you a very very long time? I ask.

I'm afraid so, he says.

I phone Hamilton Animal Control. I'm put on hold by a machine for 15 minutes and then I get a real live person. I explain my situation and get tranferred to another machine which puts me on hold for half and hour and then I hang up.

On their website, I notice that Hamilton Animal Control is in the same building as the Hamilton/Burlington SPCA so I click over to the HBSPCA site and start looking around. I find Keenan's pic and bio.

Good ol' Keenan looking like he's flipping out for the camera.

I search around some more and see Olga and Dakota listed as well but with no photos. I decide to call the HBSPCA to see if they've got any info about the Toronto dog transfers and how they're all doing.

First person picks up and then transfers me to a machine which makes me wait for a bit and then tells me to leave my phone number and someone will most definitely call back within 24 hours.


Looks like I'm going out to Hamilton this weekend.

Continued here.


Sharon said...

Feel free to not accept the cmment, but I read your post and I started to feel queezy. Isn't hamilton where they are euthenizing a higher then normal numer then animals? Forgive my ignorance if I am wrong, and I pray to the doggy gods that I am. I just thought I had heard that.

Hope your visit goes well, and that there is a real person there to serve you, and not an automated debit machine doling out dog tags.

Fred said...

Hi Sharon, I hadn't heard that about their euth rates/policies before but I guess I'm going to find out this weekend. If you don't hear back from me, it means the answering machine robots got me.

Steve Bartlett said...

I live in Hamilton. You think THS is bad? The Hamilton SPCA/Animal Control is far, far worse. Run by a political flunkie whose foot is constantly in his mouth whenever he has anything to say at all. Like calling a suspended sentence for someone who killed a dog "appropriate under the circumstances".

Andria said...

Toronto Cat Rescue pulls tons of cats out of the Hamilton shelter. Not sure if Hamilton Animal Control and Hamilton SPCA are two separate shelters or one and the same, but I know TCR is constantly pulling "at risk" cats from there.

Social Mange said...

I believe that Hamilton SPCA pulls a lot of its animals for adoption from Hamilton Animal Control. Dogs may not be as much at risk in HAC, but cats don't stand much of a chance there.

Hamilton Animal Control is a high-kill "shelter" and from what I can see, the City has no political will to make it better. Bless the people there who work with rescues to get animals out.

Laura HP said...

Reading the comments here is a little worrying. The strike is so frustrating. All the small animals disappeared from the website as well - I know where some of them went (mostly to foster - there's a canary in my room) but it's hard to keep track of them. I hope you find your dogs, Fred, and that they're doing ok! Good luck on your adventure to the land of robots.

Roaming Tigress said...

I'm a volunteer at the SPCA and yes, they are separate from Hamilton Animal Control. Have been so since 2005.

I walked Olga, a Dobe named Rosie and a GSD named Deliah last time I was there (last Monday). While Olga and Deliah are still looking for their homes, Rosie's been adopted! Animals stay at the shelter until they have been adopted, and the SPCA is known for it's fast adoption rate. Although there's animals that have been there for a while, most get adopted within a few days to two weeks.

House of the Discarded said...

Fred, I was at HAC today and there are no TAS dogs there. The people you want to speak with are not there on the weekend - don't waste your time. Come Monday and I'll meet you there if you'd like.


Fred said...

Hi Beth, I think the dogs are over at HBSPCA, tranferred from HAC. They're separate agencies but in the same building or something like that I think?

HBSPCA is listed as being open on Saturday so I'm hoping I can see them.

House of the Discarded said...

Yes...HBSPCA is next door to HAC. They share the same building.

Anonymous said...

hamilton spca is not animal control....the folks have told me our dogs are safe


Anonymous said...

The Hamilton SPCA is a no-kill shelter. The Hamilton Animal control, which is also in the same building, is not, They euthanize thousands, so the SPCA trys to take them in. Hamilton SPCA rescues dogs from all over North America.