News Release

May 13, 2015

Animal rescue society, two founding members plead guilty to charges filed by Alberta SPCA

The Oops-a-Dazy Rescue and Sanctuary Society and two of its founding members were convicted in provincial court on May 7, 2015, of contravening sections 2(1) and 2.1(b) of the Animal Protection Act.

The society pleaded guilty to one charge of causing or allowing dogs and cats in its care to be in distress, contrary to section 2(1). Debra Elaine Michel and Edward Michel each pleaded guilty to two charges of causing or allowing dogs and cats in their care to be in distress, contrary to section 2(1), and of failing to provide adequate care for wounded or ill animals, contrary to section 2.1(b).

The judge sentenced the Oops-a-Dazy Rescue and Sanctuary Society to a $10,000 fine. The society was allowed one year to pay the fine. The court did not write a prohibition order against the society.

Debra Michel and Edward Michel are jointly prohibited for 10 years from owning a combined total of more than five dogs and cats. They are also prohibited from operating a dog or cat rescue, sanctuary or boarding kennel. The court order gives the Michels 60 days to come into compliance.

The charges were filed last year by the Alberta Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (Alberta SPCA). They relate to an Alberta SPCA investigation that started on May 26, 2014, at the Michels’ property near Gleichen, Alberta. On June 10, 2014, the Alberta SPCA took into protective custody 45 dogs and 19 cats it found in distress at the property. The body of a deceased cat that was found in the room housing the living cats was taken as evidence.

All of the cats were severely ill and were euthanized by a veterinarian. The dogs were treated for various issues while in the care of the Alberta SPCA. They were later returned to the Oops-a-Dazy Rescue and Sanctuary Society with an agreement that none of the dogs would go back to the Michels’ property.

The Alberta SPCA is a registered charity dedicated to the welfare of animals. Alberta SPCA peace officers have the authority to enforce Alberta’s Animal Protection Act. Call 1-800-455-9003 to report suspected animal neglect or abuse outside Edmonton and Calgary.

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For further information, please contact

Roland Lines
Communications Manager
Alberta Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals
10806 – 124 Street NW
Edmonton, AB  T5M 0H3
Tel: 780-447-3600 ext. 3742
Email: rlines@albertaspca.org