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THS not accepting people on disability???

June 5th, 2004, 08:24 PM
My family has run into a brick wall. We would like to adopt a cat or kitten from the Toronto Humane Society, but when we applied they rejected us because my dad is on ODSP (Ontario Disability Support Pension). Why is it wrong for people on a pension to have pets? How come we had no problem adopting a dog almost two years ago?

June 5th, 2004, 09:24 PM

When did this happen?

June 5th, 2004, 09:25 PM
Sometimes this occurs because the get problems with people adopting pets and then returning them because of lack of funds to care for the pet. They then have to create norms that might exclude some people. It is unfair in some way, but it's probably because some idiots got animals not thinking that it might cost them more money than the initial adoption fee, and then they returned the animal and the H.S. had to place the animal in a new home AGAIN. These things happen, and others have to pay for it. (Sort of like Breed bans...) I can't remember who but someone who operates a rescue organisation once said in a post that they don't let students adopt animals because they are in an unstable situation. I find this unfair, I'm a student and I have a cat and a dog - and I find that I'm more stable than some adults (I'm in law school, total of 8 and a half years in univ., I have my own house with a yard, a car and I have lived with my boyfriend for 4 years now - I find this pretty stable). I was in the process of getting a dog in Montreal and even the foster mom was a student - so I guess we're not all unstable.

What you guys can do is get a kitty from another rescue organisations. There are always tons of cats that are looking for good homes and not all of them are in the H.S. Rescues are more personalized too, so instead of just ruling you out, they will take your case individually - you might have a better chance this way. They will come in and see your living space, ask you questions about your life...

By experience (here in Ottawa anyways), I find that if you qualify for getting a pet at the H.S., the process is alot easier than with a rescue.

So to conclude, try a rescue, you'll have a better chance!

June 6th, 2004, 06:32 AM
As an advocate for the disabled in the US I wold have to jump thier bones about this if it were to happen here. A catagorical denial based soley on the fact the person is disabled and the assumption that disabled people cannot support an animal is about as stupid as saying all Canadians pay too high taxes this can't afford to feed animals...!!!!! ;)
That's almost as bad as redlinning here.
Woody. :D

June 6th, 2004, 08:42 AM
This sounds like a real case of discrimination and you should definetly pursue it.
I know several people who are not"well off"and still manage to give their animals excellent care.
Then there are those,who can afford vet-care but just simply would not spend it on an animal.
I am assuming your whole family is not living on one disability-check,but even so,if you decide to get a pet I am sure you also know the responsabilities of owning one.
There are many other ways to get a cat in need of a home,there is a shelter in Burlington called Animal-Aid,it's privately run and has very good reputation.

June 6th, 2004, 11:55 AM
This happened three days ago. I dont understand why it was such a problem. I told them that I work myself, and every last penny from every check goes towards my pets. It makes me happier to see them happy then buying useless stuff for myself :D But they said that they can't look at it that way, because I'm not old enough to adopt. My dad can walk around and stuff, and he tries to get the most exercise he can. He's not in a wheelchair or anything. He has Multiple Sclerosis. (I think I spelt it wrong, but u understand :p )

Thanks for the suggestion, I'll check around for some rescues in my area. Do you know of any in Toronto?

June 6th, 2004, 12:29 PM
Disgusts me!!

As long as there is another party available to take care of the cat in case of urgency I see no reason why you guys can't get one.

So sad :(

Pls take a look here there are so very many lovlies in need of homes in the Toronto Area!!

June 6th, 2004, 01:49 PM
Hmm.. Do you know how much these cats are to adopt? I like the one under special needs.. with no tail. It's sooooo cute. I have $100 in my bank to adopt a cat with, and I've already bought the food, toys, litter box, etc. I like to be prepared ahead of time :)

Lucky Rescue
June 6th, 2004, 02:14 PM
Adoption fees vary. 100$ is pretty average. Our cats all come spayed/neutered, deworm, de-flea, vet checked and any surgeries, tooth care, etc are all done before adoption, so it's quite a bargain!!:)

June 6th, 2004, 02:21 PM

How are your dogs with cats?

June 6th, 2004, 02:36 PM
There is a way to contact each rescue specifically :D
I don't support free to good home people but if you can give a loving home to some cat that needs it here are some ads I found:

Ad #41062 Free to good home - indoor cat June 2, 2004
Shadow is about 10 years old and needs a new home. She is lovable and loved ... but unfortunately, our home is no longer suitable for a cat. She needs a good new home. She has no health problems and is de-clawed. She needs more attention then we can give at this point ...
Please contact me on email or phone. classified ads

Contact: Jim MacDonald Reply to this ad Tel: 416-640-9234

Classified ID: 57
Ad Views: 167
Seller: ajarvis
Ad started: Apr 11
Location: Canada ON L1J 4H1
Price: FREE
Type: Six Toed
Colour: Brown/black
Phone: 905-447-8073
Free six toed kitten to good home. She is approximately 10 months old. Please contact Don or Amanda at 905-447-8073. We are located in Oshawa

Classified ID: 209
Ad Views: 108
Seller: nabderr
Ad started: May 13
Location: Canada ON M4C 1G2
Price: Free
Type: Mixed
Phone: 416 698-5772
Colour: variety of colours
FREE LOVABLE KITTENS TO GOOD HOMES Litter trained. 5wks. old on May 14th. Also available, 2 female adult cats. One is a 5yr. old Persian and Tabby mix. She is very nervous and shy. Would suit someone who is single or eldery without children. The other is a 2yr. old. female, grey and white Tabby mix. If interested, please call (416)698-5772

June 6th, 2004, 02:45 PM
Did they do a health care backround check on your other pet's?

The shelter I worked for required a 24 hr waiting period and plus 72 hrs if application for adoption was submitted on a Friday or holiday weekend. In this time the Vet(s) would be contacted to make sure all other pet's in the household are up to date with vaxs and other health issues. If the records were not up to snuff so to speak the adoption was nixed. Even a record of having a female dog aborted from a mismate was grounds for not allowing any adoption to go through.

June 6th, 2004, 02:56 PM
Some of interest:

714130- Cat:Russian Blue
Stoney Creek,ON 999-999-9999 Raina 06-04-2004
Name: Bella
Age:1 1/2 years
Delete Bella is a lovely, child and other cat friendly blue-grey short haired Russian Blue mix female. She is fully dewormed and flea treated, and is seeking a kind, loving, indoor only home. Adoption fee of $40 applies

713633- Kitten:Orange Tabby, long hair
Stoney Creek,ON *** *** **** Lily 06-04-2004
Name: Rusty
Age:9 weeks
Delete Rusty is an adorable, cuddly and sweet 9 week old male Orange tabby with medium-long hair. Dewormed, flea and earmite treated, Rusty is seeking a loving, indoor only home. Rusty is good with children, other cats and dogs. Adoption fee of $40 applies.

713010- Cat:Seal Point Siamese
Hamilton,ON 000-000-0000 Laura 06-04-2004
Name: B & T
Age:8 and 10 years
Delete B & T are father and son Seal Point Siamese males. They are both neutered and declawed. B, the younger of the boys is a real cuddler, who is a little round around the sides, he is on a vet diet in order to help him lose weight. T is a beautiful and talkative boy in excellent shape. These boys are looking for a loving, mature home due to the death of their elderly owner. If you are a childless couple, senior or retired and looking for two loving and mature pets, please consider B & T as the loving additions to your family. A small adoption fee will apply to ensure a good home.

711345- Cat:DSH Calico
Toronto,ON 416 699-7132 Silke Lovett 06-01-2004
Name: Undine
Delete Undine needs a new home due to her owners allergies. She is fixed and litterbox trained and does not go outside. She is very affectionate and would be great as an only pet, since she does not get along well with other pets. There will be an adoption fee.

709914- Cat:domestic short/medium hair
Toronto,ON 416-924-8337 Sandrine 05-31-2004
Name: unnamed
Age:3.5 months
Delete Found a male kitten two weeks ago. He is mostly white, with a little orange on his head, ears, his tail is orange and he has an orange patch on one side. I would say he is almost four months old. He is very friendly and good with my other cat and also with my dog. He has also been around babies. Please contact me if you are interested. Small adoption fee to ensure a good home

137- Cat:Russian blue
Whitby,ON (905)-665-9883 Stephanie Price 05-27-2004
Name: Joey
Delete Joey is a social, loving cat who loves children and is very comfortable around dogs. She has been both declawed and spayed. Please help us find her a good home. We are asking for twenty-five dollars for her.

June 6th, 2004, 04:04 PM
Wow,there are hundreds of cats available in Toronto alone,that's soo sad,but at least they are in shelters or fostercare,not on the streets.
I am sure you can find one,it will be very difficult though,to pick one among all those needy cats. Good Luck!
Tell us what happens!

Bill & Bob
June 6th, 2004, 07:26 PM
I would really flip out about that. You should get in touch with a disability advocate in your area. Shouldn't be too hard to find on the net. In BC they have the BC Coalition of Persons with Disabilities. That is pure discrimination. I can see the ponts Mako made, but then why not reject people who have kids because someone adopted a dog and their kid eventually didn't want it anymore and they took it back. Or why not reject older people because they might be reaching an assumed life expectancy, and the animal would be returned upon owner death. Why not reject males, because some male moron adopted a huge muscle breed to boost his ego and decided he didn't want it anymore?

Anyhoo, that's stupid. One point I would make, which I know everyone is aware of is the physically therapeutic value of the animal and the benefits your Dad would gain by having the animal.

Anyhoo, the Humane Society is likely provincially funded. You should consider calling your Member of the Legislated Assembly for your constituency and ask a few questions. They might take notice. Worth a try anyway.

June 6th, 2004, 07:53 PM
Yeah, Bill, I didn't mean to sound like I thought what they were doing was alright. I was simply stating that most of the times organisations have to put up laws like this because of a bad experience. (Like why they have to write "may contain traces of nuts" on chocolate covered nuts - they got sued because there was no warning).

But yes, it is total discrimination. But who would bother fighting to get a cat there. Go against them so they don't do it to others, but adopt a cat from a rescue who will appreciate you for you! There are thousands of cats out there looking for good homes.

June 6th, 2004, 08:40 PM
Thanks alot for all the help, and suggestions on where to find a cat. I was talking to my boss, and he told me that he knows someone who was adopting out two older cats, Shai and Ziggy, and he said he was gunna tell me weither they're available tomorrow.

As for my dogs, they love cats. I take them to my friends house and their neighbor has like 5 of them that come out and play with them all the time. lol, it's so cute to see this huge 76lb pitbull lay on the ground with a cat pinning him, lol. I think the only thing I'd be afraid of is if the dogs lick the cats too much, lol.

June 7th, 2004, 03:53 PM
AM04.the dogs might like the cats,but maybe the cats will not like the dogs,it can cause just as much difficulty :eek: I know my cats,not being used to dogs,do not like dogs,except for my neighbors Cocker,but she is on the other side of the fence.
I hope there is no problem,because two older cats would be ideal..

June 7th, 2004, 04:06 PM
AM04 I have a rescue board, and we have alot of kittens/cats, puppies/dogs that need's homes in all areas.

Please feel free to check the board out and see if any are in your area.

Here's the link to my site

Annie's Animal Rescue Board (

I hope it is very useful to you. As I agree that this is discrimination against you and your father. I would also pursue it and make it a big deal.

Please keep us updated and let us know what happens.

Good Luck!!!

June 8th, 2004, 07:13 PM
I went to go see Shai and Ziggy, and found out that they live with a dog. But they didn't react too well to chaos, they hissed and stuck up their fur and tried swating him.. so I decided that it's too much stress for a 6yr old cat to go through. Still on the search ;)

I'll take a look at that link, thanks.

June 9th, 2004, 08:04 AM
AM04.Actually no cat would take to a dog right away,it takes time and patience for them to get used to each other.But good luck in your search,it should not be too hard to find cats needing homes...there are thousands I am sure.

June 9th, 2004, 09:19 AM
Just to let you know the humane society is privately funded. The government gives them nothing. They have a set of guidelines that they follow for adoption, although sometimes it is not fair to be put in a generalized catagory but unfortunatley they do it for the animals so they are not returned. Some and I mean some not all people on disability do not have enough money and in that case the animal is the one who suffers. Alot of people still look at pets as disposable and if they dont fit in your lifestyle give them up.

June 19th, 2004, 12:05 AM
I have a cat now.. My cousin's friend moved into a house that is a no pets.. and she was keeping it with her for acouple months then got a letter saying they were doing inspections. So she gave the cat to me, and her two dogs (jrt, and a chow mix) went to my cousin. At first Buffy (the kitty) didn't like the idea of being in a new home, with new ppl, and two new dogs to deal with and hid under my bed or in my closet for the night.. then in the morning warmed up, and I found my dogs and my kitty sleeping together that night :D it was so cute. I'm thinking about taking my cat for a walk with the dogs :p my cousin's friend use to tie buffy outside for an hour or so.

I think she may be over weight as well.. She's 2 years old, spayed, declawed, and utd with shots. Ppl have told me that spaying/neutering pets gives them extra weight.. is this true? How do I know if she's over weight, and acouple pounds haven't been added cuz of spaying..? The reason why I think she is over weight, is because I can use two hands and pet her while she's laying down.. that's how wide she is. she also has a stomach that hangs down.. could this just be from spaying? Should I put her on a special diet? wow.. I'm on a question roll tonight :p

Lucky Rescue
June 19th, 2004, 09:01 AM
Spaying does not make cats gain weight. Lack of exercise and too much food does that (just like it does with us!)

This cat definitely sounds way overweight. How much and what are you feeding her?

June 21st, 2004, 09:44 PM
When we got her we put down a some food, and it's been about 3 days and there's still some there. The lady who owned her before me said that she had always kept the food dish full, but Buffy (the cat) had made a full dish last 2 - 3 days. I'm not sure of the food that she was feeding it, we still have some left. She put it in a container for us to take.. She still has quite a bit left. How often should I feel a full grown cat? I've always just kept food in the dish, for it to eat when it wanted.. I've never had an over weight cat.. But I've also noticed that Buffy is a lap cat.. and very lazy. Kinda like Garfield, heh. She doesn't play, and wont chase anything.. Is there any kind of food that I can give her.. like a diet food? Do canned foods make them gain weight?

June 22nd, 2004, 06:01 PM
I don't post here often but I had to add to this thread.

I realise you now have a cat however I would seriously consider pursuing this issue with the THS. I have dealt with them on a couple of occasions as an adopter (a dog and a small animal) and noticed that who you get as a adoption counselor really effects the experience you have. As such, I think it would be worth a phone call to the centre director regarding this issue just to let them know what happened. They'll tell you what official reason for refusal is listed on your application. How and what they worded there will tell you alot. If it reads something along the lines of disability then something needs to change there I think. That's not right. If their issue is fixed income then they would assumedly not adopt to retirees either, however from what i've seen, they do. If their issue is declining health, again, i'd take issue with that. I have a bad back that has thrown out on me about three times in my life. When it happened, I literally couldn't walk for a week at a time. It can happen to anyone and at that point, everyone, disease or no disease, needs to make arrangements for their animals. As such, unless they have some sort of can't hurt yourself clause, I don't feel they should be able to deny adoption based on this factor.

Regardless, without hypothezing, the situation deserves further investigation. I would hate to think that your family had to deal with the moodswings some arbitrary volunteer. I've dealt with one such person at THS myself so my fear here is that it was the same one still there.

On that note, when I adopted my hamster, the lady I had as my counselor was fantastic and showed a real vested interest in the small animals. Even going so far as to scrounge up a roll around ball that they weren't using to send home with me. Some people have a tendancy of just dismissing the smaller critters as less important then the cats and dogs. This lady however seemed to genuinely love them.


June 23rd, 2004, 09:14 PM
Thanks Dee, I'll give them a call, and let everyone know what they say.

I mentioned to them that I had a steady job, the same I've had for almost 3 years now, and was bringing in my own money on a weekly basis to pay for any needs for the pets. I bring my dogs in to a vet once a month, just for a check up. as well, I bring them to a groomer once every other week to cut down the nails, get shampoo'd and all around pampered. I brought vet records, and my dogs, to the humane society when my dad and myself went in for an interview. I also had adopted my oldest pitbull from there, and mentioned that. But it was still no go, as I'm only 17 and you have to be 18 to adopt - which is why my dad was there. So my income doesn't count, and my dad's isn't good enough. I think they should realize that if our income wasn't well enough to own another pet, then we wouldn't take one into consideration. If we wanted one for misuse, or whatever, then they should also realize that I already own 3 budgies, a cat, 2 dogs, a rat, a mouse, and a Het Albino Burmese Python. I take home, on average, $200 a week. I don't buy rat food, or hamster food for my mouse and rat. I use home recipes I've gotten from my vet, that are less costly, and, as she says, more healthy. She had told me that Alfalfa pellets were bad for a rat's digestive system, so I took that into consideration and asked if there was an alternative, so she gave me home recipes which my rat loves! I spend about $150 a week on my pets, and save whatever I have left into a bank account used for emergancies for my pets. After getting Buffy, my new kitty, I keep thinking that maybe it was sort of fate that they declined me, and I got her. She's like one of the dogs, 'cept she sleeps more :p
But again, thank you Dee, and everyone else. I felt kind of embarrassed about the situation I was in, as it seems everyone I've mentioned my family's disadvantage to put it down, and I felt like I was nothing anymore.. But everyone here seems so concearned that I'm feeling better about it, and that things are taken care of. I thank you again everyone! For all the help! :D