SPCA investigating report that 100 sled dogs were killed in Whistler

The B.C. SPCA is investigating a report that about 100 healthy sled dogs were killed in Whistler last year following a post-Olympic downturn in business.

Lorie Chortyk, a spokesperson for the B.C. SPCA, said an investigation was launched after the society learned of the claims through a WorkSafe B.C. report on January 28.

According to the report, which was obtained by CKNW radio, an employee with Outdoor Adventures Whistler has been granted compensation for developing post-traumatic stress disorder after he was allegedly required to kill the dogs last April.

Chortyk described the details of the incident as "horrifying".

"It's just one of the most sickening things I've ever read in my life," she told the Straight by phone. "Because they were shot in front of one another, it was just terror and chaos."

According to Chortyk, some of the sled dogs were shot more than once, or were thrown alive into what the document described as a mass grave.

The dogs were allegedly killed following a drop in dog-sledding tour bookings after the 2010 Olympic Games.

Following the SPCA investigation, a file will be forwarded to Crown counsel to determine whether any charges will be laid under the Criminal Code or under the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act, said Chortyk.

The Whistler RCMP detachment has offered to assist the SPCA with the investigation.

A statement issued by Outdoor Adventures at Whistler Ltd (OAW) described the incident as "tragic and regrettable".

According to the statement, the cull took place at Howling Dog Tours Whistler Inc, which Outdoor Adventures assumed operational control of in May 2010 after four years of financial stake in the dog-sledding tour company.

"OAW was aware of the relocation and euthanization of dogs at Howling Dogs in April 2010 but it was our expectation that it was done in a proper, legal and humane manner," the statement read. "We only learned otherwise on Friday, January 28 when we read the WCB ruling for the first time."

According to the OAW statement, the company's policy is now to require any dog euthanizations to take place at a veterinarian's office.



barry william teske

Jan 31, 2011 at 2:24pm

isn't animal slavery and exploitation wonderful!!!

John Campbell

Jan 31, 2011 at 5:17pm

The SPCA is not without its own faults, I had a cat, not mine, turn up at my rural property that had been gutted by a coyote. I took the poor animal to the nearest SPCA on 152nd st in Surrey and asked them to put the poor animal down. Their response was to take it to a vet, at that point I asked where the nearest Vet was and also told them I would report this to the newspapers at which point they reconsidered and put the Cat down. Society for the Prevention to Cruelty to Animals my ass.


Jan 31, 2011 at 6:15pm

Best place on earth where greed is king
(the world is watching)

Lynda Rupar

Jan 31, 2011 at 7:14pm

They should be fined to the point where they can no longer be in business. This was a disgusting crime and they should be punished to the fullest extent of the law!!!

stewart shuman

Jan 31, 2011 at 7:24pm

HEADS SHOULD ROLL and not just the dogs - maybe the spca should spend more money on capturing the criminals than building new high cost shelters- they want to put one here in Surrey next to our city pound- which our mayor thinks is a waste of donation money They need 2 hire some investigators and change the law- in BC you can kill your animal if you do it humanely....what the H does that mean???


Jan 31, 2011 at 9:53pm

'Required to kill the dogs'? I would rather be fired from any job than carry out a boss's order like that. Sickening.

Melanie Lee Z.

Feb 1, 2011 at 8:48am

Who are we to take these animals that are there for us working their damn a@ses off for man and women to be the ones to take their life from them because of the fact that they are no longer of importance to us. Where is it written that man and women are above all other creatures that exist on this planet. We are all here for a reason and its to bad that some people look down on other animals and see them as just some damn stupid animal that has no thoughts or feelings and that they are above them because of who they are. We are all here for a reason and maybe someday before its to late we as people might realize that.

Leave it to Beaver

Feb 1, 2011 at 9:19am

Or leave it to someone like John Campbell to go on a tangent about the many faults of the SPCA. Is that really this issue here?


Feb 1, 2011 at 10:30am

Mahatma Gandhi said:

"the greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by
the way its animals are treated,"