The SPCA in Duncan will receive $1 million to replace their 27-year-old facility and redevelop a 697-square metre Vancouver Island animal behaviour centre on the existing site.
The animal behaviour centre will be the first of its kind in Canada.
The province is providing $12 million to help build BC SPCA shelter replacements in four different communities.
“This is so exciting not just for Cowichan but for the other three B.C. communities as well, we are so grateful and proud to be a trailblazer,” said Vancouver Island Animal Care Services senior manager Leon Davis.
“This facility is 27 years old and it just doesn’t fit all of our needs, and the requirements that we have. When we saw the need that we have for the number of behavioural challenged animals that are coming into our centres across the province, we thought this would be an amazing opportunity to look at a focused facility that is going to help break down some of these challenges for animals that have behaviour problems that may be stopping them from getting adopted. We look forward to be able to share data with our partners in Humane Canada on the successes we are inevitably are going to see.”
“For many British Columbians, pets are part of the family,” said Premier David Eby. “Yet sadly, it’s still too common to hear about abandoned or mistreated animals. British Columbians care deeply about the welfare of all animals. That’s why we’re helping the BC SPCA build four new facilities where rescue animals will be able to get the high-quality care they need and deserve, before they find new homes.”
Many pet owners visit SPCA locations when in search of a furry, or feathered friend to bring home. The new Duncan facility is currently in the stages of planning, design, and permits. The plan is to begin the demolition and groundbreaking process by late 2024 with a mid-2025 completion date in sight.
“This new centre is going to mean the world to the animals,” said Davis. “Behavioural challenges lengthens the time it takes for animals to find their forever home, and this new centre will drastically shorten it. You don’t want to keep any animal in a shelter for an extended period of time as it is not good for their welfare. They do much better in homes which is why we utilize fostering as much as we can. It’s going to save many animals lives, and for the community it will mean that we are going to have behaviourally sound animals that people are going to want to adopt.”