To report a companion animal in distress, complainants should contact the Nova Scotia SPCA by phone (1-888-703-7722), use their direct online complaint form, or email: firstname.lastname@example.org
To report farmed animals in distress: 1-877-9ENVIRO [1-877-936-8476]) or email ICE@novascotia.ca, the Department of Environment. The office is monitored from Monday to Friday, 8:30 am to 4:30 pm. Complainants are directed to contact RCMP or municipal police after office hours.
To report a wildlife or fish emergency, people are encouraged to contact a conservation officer by phone (1-800-565-2224) or use this online complaint form.
Investigations & Enforcement
The Nova Scotia SPCA cruelty officers are responsible for companion animal investigations. These officers are also contracted for animal control with 16 contracts among various municipalities, towns, and First Nations communities. The SPCA currently employs 13 Full time officers and 4 part time. The enforcement department of the SPCA receives a government grant to support anti-cruelty work. In 2018, this grant was worth $320,000, whereas the investigation expenses amounted to a total of $725,560.
The Department of Environment is responsible for the responding to farm animal welfare complaints under the Animal Protect Act and sections of the Criminal Code.
The majority of cases investigated involve general neglect.
Brian Cox, Senior Crown Attorney
Nova Scotia has a designated Environment Prosecutor. The prosecutor works explicitly on cases related to the Environment Act, food safety, public health, meat inspection, fisheries and aquaculture, animal welfare, natural resources and the fur industry. Brian Cox, a senior Crown attorney in Halifax was appointed to the role in 2018.
Janine Kidd, Crown Prosecutor, Nova Scotia
Janine prosecutes animal cruelty offences in the Halifax Regional Municipality. Janine advises the SPCA, police and consults with colleges about animal cruelty files in Dartmouth and Halifax. She presented at the 2018 National Centre for the Prosecution of Animal Cruelty Conference on new precedent-setting animal cruelty prosecution cases across the country.
Human-Animal Wellbeing and Supports
ElderDog Canada is an organization based in Nova Scotia with offices throughout Canada. ElderDog focuses on maintaining the human-animal bond, particularly for senior people and dogs. Through their Dog Care Support for Seniors program, volunteers assist seniors care for their pets by obtaining food, minor grooming, transportation to vet appointments, and temporary care during hospitalization free of charge.
The Nova Scotia SPCA’s ‘Spay and Neuter Program’ services low-income families at subsidized rates. There are three clinics that offer this program throughout the province (Dartmouth SPCA, Cape Breton SPCA, Yarmouth SPCA).
Bide Awhile offers a spay and neuter program as well as a ‘Pet Pantry Food Bank’ for low-income people who qualify.
** Both the Nova Scotia SPCA and Bide Awhile are offering food during COVID-19 (opens in new window).
The Disaster Animal Response Team of Nova Scotia works in partnership with the Canadian Red Cross to set up emergency shelters for animals affected by man-made and natural disasters. As people often will not evacuate without their pets, this provides a safe place for animals to reside to ensure the health and safety of both people and animals.