Hamilton, ON (November 25, 2020) – Life continues to get better for cats and their families every day in Hamilton.  PetSmart Charities of Canada has granted $74,904 to the Hamilton/Burlington SPCA (HBSPCA) to help chronically under-resourced pets and their people access basic veterinary care.

“We are humbled by the trust PetSmart Charities of Canada has in the HBSPCA Team for 6 years now to keep pets and their people together,” says Marion Emo, CEO. “This year, the grant will fund access to affordable spay/neuter surgeries, and health and wellness clinics for vulnerable pets in partnership with social service agencies in Hamilton. Proactive and preventative care for pets prevents illness and disease, reduces costs and keeps pets at home where they belong.”

“HBSPCA has proven to be a trusted community ally, and we are proud to once again partner to provide vital resources to pets in need,” said Dani LaGiglia, regional relationship manager at PetSmart Charities of Canada. “The organization’s holistic approach and collaborative efforts will continue to remove the barriers to affordable pet health and wellness care throughout Hamilton and surrounding communities.” While pets and people together are a wellness combination, PetSmart Charities of Canada has long recognized the variety of barriers to accessible veterinary care in Canadian communities including but not limited to language, culture, poverty, or access to transportation.

Food bank usage in Hamilton reflects poverty. The 2019 Hunger Report (Feed Ontario) showed Hamilton having the 2nd highest food bank usage per capita in all of Ontario in 2018 with 12,300 (12 in every 100) people making 111,828 food bank visits. That same report shows, for Hamilton, that ODSP income was $486 less than the monthly Market Basket Measure and that Ontario Works income was $922 less than the same measure. Little has changed and the Times of COVID have exasperated pet families’ situations.

“Although some say that people should have pets only if they can meet their full cost of care,” reflects Karen Reichheld, Senior Manager, Animal Care, “we know that animals make a difference in people’s health and well-being every day.  There are people who get up every morning because they have a pet companion who is their best friend. Isolated seniors agree to hospital care only when their pet companions are fostered and provided basic veterinary care. And the relationships between differently abled persons and horses are restorative. Pets and people are a healing combination”.

The grant will subsidize co-pay spay/neuter surgeries and health and wellness clinics commencing June 2021.

Contact information: Marion Emo, CEO. 905-574-7722 ext. 310.

About the Hamilton-Burlington SPCA

The Hamilton/Burlington SPCA (HBSPCA) keeps pets and their people together, helps pet owners be the pet parents they want to be and rehomes neglected and abandoned animals for second chance lives.

Charitable Registration # 11923 6750 RR0001

Facebook https://www.facebook.com/HBSPCA

Instagram https://www.instagram.com/hamiltonburlingtonspca/

Twitter https://twitter.com/HB_SPCA

About PetSmart Charities® of Canada

PetSmart Charities® of Canada is committed to finding lifelong, loving homes for all pets by supporting programs and thought leadership that bring people and pets together. Through its in-store adoption program in all PetSmart® stores across Canada, PetSmart Charities of Canada helps to find forever homes and families for more than 30,000 shelter pets each year. PetSmart Charities of Canada also provides grant funding to registered Canadian charities aligned with its mission. Each year, more than 500,000 generous PetSmart shoppers help pets in need by donating to PetSmart Charities of Canada using the PIN pads at checkout registers inside PetSmart stores. In turn, PetSmart Charities of Canada efficiently uses more than 90 cents of every dollar donated to fulfill its role as a leading funder of animal welfare in Canada, granting more than $21.7 million since its inception in 1999. PetSmart Charities of Canada is a registered Canadian charity, a member of Imagine Canada and is independent from the PetSmart business in Canada. To learn more visit www.petsmartcharities.ca

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