Ministry of Community Safety and Correctional Services :: About Animal Welfare

Animal Welfare

Cruelty to animals will not be tolerated in Ontario.

If you believe that an animal is in distress, or to report suspected animal abuse:

  • Call 310-SPCA (7722) or 1-888-668-7722 or email cruelty@ospca.on.ca
  • Contact your local OSPCA Branch/Affiliate or local Humane Society, or your local police
  • You may also contact Crime Stoppers anonymously at 1-800-222-TIPS (8477)

Through the Ontario Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (OSPCA) Act, Ontario has the strongest animal welfare legislation in Canada. We protect animals by enforcing strong rules and tough penalties.

In Ontario, it is an offence to:

  • Cause or permit distress to an animal.
  • Cause harm to a law enforcement animal.
  • Train or permit animals to fight other animals.
  • Own or possess equipment or structures used in animal fighting.
  • Fail to comply with standards of care applicable to all animals.
  • Obstruct an OSPCA inspector or agent.

Convictions can result in sentences that may include up to two years in jail, fines of up to $60,000, and a lifetime ban on animal ownership, as well as other penalties.

Our goal is to ensure that Ontario’s animals are protected and treated in the humane manner that our society expects.