Making Change for Companion Animals: Pets OK BC on Rental Housing Policy, & Paws for Hope on the Harmful Existence of Breeding Mills

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We start this show with a brief discussion about what’s at stake for animals in British Columbia’s general election on Tuesday, May 9th. We then cover two topics affecting companion animals, both locally & around the world: restrictions on companion animals in rental housing, and the harmful existence of breeding mills.

Eliot and his dog Lucy, when they were living in a van due to lack of animal-friendly housing.Eliot Galán, Pets OK BC

Anyone who lives in Vancouver knows how challenging it is to find affordable housing in this city. Every once in a while, someone will find a listing that finally matches their income, and looks almost perfect…until they see those dreaded two words: “no pets.” With an estimated 75-97% of rentals being off limits to people with dogs or cats (depending on price range), guardians of companion animals have an even more difficult time finding housing than everybody else in Vancouver.

Our first interview on this show is with Eliot Galán, who wound up living in his van a few years ago after struggling to find housing that would accept his dog Lucy. Alongside fellow concerned citizens, Eliot launched Pets OK BC – a local group advocating for the abolition of unreasonable restrictions on companion animals in rental housing. He joins us on the show to discuss the Pets OK BC campaign, and the various ways that “no pet” policies are affecting both humans and their animal companions.

Kathy Powelson, Paws for Hope Animal Foundation

Puppy Mill Action Week begins Saturday, May 6th, and on this show we feature an interview with Kathy Powelson, executive director of the Paws for Hope Animal Foundation.

Breeding mills are businesses that breed companion animals to be sold for profit. As with other animal exploitation industries, money is the bottom line – the animals involved are seen merely as products and breeding machines. Breeding animals are often made to suffer horrific conditions, living their entire lives in filthy cages, exposed to extreme temperatures, with a lack of adequate nutrition, veterinary care, or opportunities to socialize. Puppies, kittens, young rabbits, and other companion animals are then sold over the internet or to pet stores, where unsuspecting customers purchase them – unaware that they’re funding the continued abuse of their new companion’s parents. As is the case on other kinds of animal farms, it’s typically business as usual to kill animals who are too sick, old, or just worn out to produce a profit for business owners.

Through their Pets Are Not Products campaign, Paws for Hope aims to end the retail sale of companion animals, in turn ending the existence of breeding mills.


Kathy Powelson and her dogs, Chilli and Max. (Photo Mario Bartel/NewsLeader)


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