Two charged with selling sick dogs without documentation in N.S.

·2 min read
The Nova Scotia SPCA's enforcement team has laid charges against two women for allegedly importing and selling sick dogs without the required documentation. (Nova Scotia SPCA - image credit)
The Nova Scotia SPCA's enforcement team has laid charges against two women for allegedly importing and selling sick dogs without the required documentation. (Nova Scotia SPCA - image credit)

Two women in Nova Scotia are facing legal action for allegedly importing and selling sick dogs without proper documentation.

The Nova Scotia SPCA said in a news release Tuesday that in both cases, a number of dogs that were being sold and adopted to new owners were so sick that they died.

The SPCA was notified of both cases through confidential complaints and tips, said Jo-Anne Landsburg, the organization's chief provincial inspector.

"We are grateful to those who see something and say something," said Landsburg in the release.

Lisa Benoit, 50, of Halifax and Trudy Steiner, 44, of Aylesford each face multiple counts of selling dogs without a certificate of health as required under the province's Animal Protection Act. Steiner has also been charged with providing false or misleading information under the act.

The SPCA said it received complaints last December of sick dogs being transported to Nova Scotia from Texas. It's alleged Benoit facilitated the cross-border transportation of approximately 60 dogs every month that were then sold without the proper papers.

Paul Poirier
Paul Poirier

The organization also alleges many of the dogs were sick when they arrived, got sick afterward or died en route to Canada.

The charges against Steiner stem from a separate complaint received last month regarding dogs allegedly being sold with severe, communicable diseases.

An investigation found at least 13 dogs had been adopted with severe health issues, the release said. Three dogs were seized as part of the SPCA investigation.

Steiner is due in Kentville provincial court on July 9, while Benoit is scheduled to appear in Halifax provincial court on July 22.

Landsburg said in an interview that veterinary certificates obtained in other jurisdictions aren't valid in Nova Scotia.

"We do support the safe transport of animals in a humane manner," Landsburg said, adding animals being sold in Nova Scotia must receive medical examinations upon arrival in the province.

Landsburg said people hoping to buy a pet should ask the seller for a Nova Scotia veterinary certificate of health.

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