VHS Newsletter Winter 2016
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In This Issue
  • VHS report challenges Vancouver Aquarium's defence of cetacean captivity
  • Exposing the dark side of the sled dog industry
  • More schools join our Meatless Monday program!
  • Thank you to everyone who supported our Giving Tuesday appeal
  • Sick and injured animals appreciate your help
  • Meeting up for meatless meals

VHS report challenges Vancouver Aquarium's defence of cetacean captivity

VHS and Zoocheck Canada have published a report challenging claims that whale and dolphin captivity are justified. The report, A Crumbling Case for Cetacean Captivity?, was released at a news conference on December 14, attracting substantial media coverage. It specifically examines the kind of information provided to the public about the value of captive cetacean-associated research and about the educational value of putting cetaceans on public display.

The report, which looked at cetacean research by the Vancouver Aquarium and by Ontario's Marineland, found that "The research output using captive cetaceans as study subjects at both facilities could be characterized as low."  The report also found that "...there is no compelling evidence that zoo and aquarium visits are educational in any meaningful sense of the word or promote conservation attitudes."  A press release and full copy of the report is available here. Thanks to our generous supporters who enabled us to publish this important report. Special thanks to the Animal Welfare Foundation of Canada for their funding support.

Exposing the dark side of the sled dog industry

VHS donors will remember our campaign against sled dog cruelty after the infamous Whistler sled dog massacre in 2010.  We're continuing that fight with our support for a new documentary, Sled Dogs, which exposes the suffering of dogs used in sled dog races and tours.  The film was premiered at the Whistler Film Festival on December 4, immediately attracting controversy, as sled dog industry representatives called for the film to be withdrawn.

VHS defended the film in media reports and, with your help, we plan to continue promoting the film and speaking out on behalf of sled dogs.  The documentary will be shown at more film festivals and will ultimately be shown on the CBC Documentary Channel.  We'll keep you posted on future screenings.  More information on the plight of sled dogs can be found here.

More schools join our Meatless Monday program! 

Our Meatless Monday program has caught fire. Eight schools have now joined, including three in the last two months. In addition to Langara College, BCIT, SFU and Capilano University, four secondary schools are now serving a selection of plant-based options every Monday in their food facilties. The latest to participate is Killarney Secondary, whose amazing effort was featured in the Vancouver Courier.  

With your support we hope to expand this program to more schools and also to hospitals. The more people who try a plant-based diet, the more animals will be saved from factory farm suffering and slaughter.  What's more, a reduction in the demand for meat helps the environment.  And, as a growing body of scientific evidence shows, a plant-based diet is good for you!  If you haven't already done so, please take the Meatless Monday pledge.

Thank you to everyone who supported our Giving Tuesday appeal

A huge thank you to the incredible donors and partnering businesses who supported our #GivingTuesdayCA campaign with The Happy Herd Farm Sanctuary!  We're still counting but it looks like we raised well over $10,000! Also a special shout out to our generous matching gift sponsors for the campaign, Lisa Kramer and Mark Kamstra. We're so grateful for everyone's support and the funds raised will help us continue to strive for a humane society for all animals! Please support these compassionate businesses:
ChickpeaChikumCulver City SaladsDaiya FoodsErgogenicsEternal AbundanceLotus Seed VeganLoving Hut VancouverNice ShoesParthenon Supermarket and DeliVeganSupplyVeronicas Gourmet PerogiesVirtuous PieZEND Conscious Lounge3G Vegetarian Restaurant

Sick and injured animals appreciate your help

Saidee, picture left, is one of the animals we helped recently through our McVitie Fund for sick and injured animals. Her caregiver, who suffers from chronic health problems, was distraught when Saidee became ill and was diagnosed with severe dental problems.  Her guardian couldn't afford the vet bill and reached out to VHS for help.

Thanks to the donors who support the McVitie Fund, we were able to help get Saidee the dental work she needed. She's doing fine now and her guardian is relieved and grateful that someone was there to help.

Every donation to the McVitie Fund from now until next April will be doubled, up to a maximum of $20,000. For more information click here

Meeting up for meatless meals

In our digital world, one social media site aims to use the internet to get off the internet: Helping members join groups unified by common interest, Meetup is ideally suited to helping vegetarians and vegans (veg*ns) in a meat-centred world to connect. Most of the veg*n groups on also welcome those who have made the decision to transition to a veg*n diet but are not quite there yet. But what about those who see the value in eating more plant based meals but may not wish to ever transition to a fully veg*n diet? Meatless Meetup is worth checking out.

Meatless Meetup organizer Nancy Callan says, “Any time a person chooses to eat a plant based meal, they help animals, the environment, and often their own health. We would never want to discourage that by requiring adherence to a philosophy before we even sit down to eat. From omnivore to vegan, all are welcome at our events.”

The largest veg*n group in the Lower Mainland, most Meatless Meetup events take place at restaurants but the group also hosts drinks nights, potlucks, games nights, festival visits and more. For more information, visit

VHS would like to thank the Vancouver Foundation for generously supporting the design and production of this newsletter.  The foundation has long recognized VHS’s work on behalf of animals and we are grateful for its continued support.

Copyright © 2016 Vancouver Humane Society, All rights reserved.

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