Provincial task force to investigate reported sled dog killings
The provincial government has launched a task force to look into the reported killing of about 100 sled dogs in Whistler last year.
Premier Gordon Campbell has announced that Kamloops-North MLA Terry Lake will lead the task force, which will also include representation from the B.C. SPCA and the Union of B.C. Municipalities.
The task force will review the circumstances around the reported mass killing in April 2010, and why authorities didn’t find out about the incident earlier.
"The tragic and disturbing details that have emerged around how these dogs were inhumanely treated are not acceptable to British Columbians or to their government," said Premier Gordon Campbell in a press release issued today (February 2). "No creature should ever have to suffer in the manner that has been reported, and we want to ensure that nothing like this ever happens again in our province."
The B.C. SPCA has launched an investigation into the incident, which became public on January 31 when media reports indicated an employee with the tour company Outdoor Adventures Whistler has been granted compensation for post-traumatic stress disorder after killing the dogs. The SPCA described the details of the incident outlined in a WorkSafe BC report as horrifying.
Outdoor Adventures has said that while they were aware of the relocation and euthanization of the dogs, “it was our expectation that it was done in a proper, legal and humane manner.”
The task force led by Lake, who is a veterinarian, will also review issues related to regulation and oversight of the dog sledding industry, and make recommendations to prevent future incidents.
The task force report will be completed within 45 days, when it will be forwarded to the minister of agriculture for review before it is made public.