Lifestyle & Human Interest

Animal Rescue Society '100% Supportive' of Slamming Animal Abuser with Lifetime Pet Ban


When we see someone falter, make an error, or do something bad, many of us hope the person will admit their wrongdoing and change their ways. We often put ourselves in their shoes, and we’d want a second chance, so why not extend that grace to others?

That’s all well and good when the lapse in judgment involved small or petty personal injustices, but when it’s led to the suffering and death of other creatures, it’s much harder to extend the olive branch.

Those who abuse children and animals are generally regarded as the lowest of the low. How someone could go out of their way to hurt helpless innocents is (thankfully) beyond many of us.

April Dawn Irving is one of those people. In 2014, the Alberta SPCA uncovered one of the largest hoarding situations and rescued 201 dogs from deplorable conditions.

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Deanna Thompson, executive director of the Alberta Animal Rescue Crew Society, said the find was “horrendous.” The rescued canines were dubbed the “Milk River Dogs.”

“Honestly, I’ve never seen animals so emaciated, they were skin and bones,” she told the Edmonton Journal. It was one of the worst cases she’d ever seen.

Not only were 201 dogs in horrible shape removed from Irving’s care, but five more were found dead on her property within the month.

Irving had previously been banned from owning more than two animals in Saskatchewan, and she missed her court dates following the 2014 seizure of her 200+ animals. For the past couple years she’s been on the lam, but was finally located and arrested last week.

AARCS has advocated for these dogs, and posted a video recently to remind people of this woman’s atrocious behavior.

“April Irving is the woman accused of causing immense pain and suffering to 201 dogs who were taken from her property in Milk River and AARCS cared for the majority of these animals back in 2014,” the rescue posted. “This was one of the worst cases of neglect we have ever seen.”

“The animals, a mixture of Huskies, Irish Wolf Hounds, Malamutes and Komodors were in horrendous condition upon arrival. They came to us extremely emaciated, with badly matted fur, dehydrated and very hungry. Some had broken bones, open and infected wounds and most were riddled with parasites.”

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Irving has repeatedly proven herself incapable of properly caring for animals. Now, the AARCS is calling for a lifetime ban on owning animals for Irving, something that seems to be warranted by these large-scale and repeat offenses.

“One hundred percent we support a lifetime ban… I never want her around another animal,” Thompson agreed. “She’s proved she hasn’t learned from it, so I think that would be appropriate in this case.”

According to the rescue’s post, all the dogs have been adopted and are no doubt well on their way to eating, playing and sleeping off their former life. Meanwhile, if you’d like to sign the petition to enforce a lifetime animal ownership ban for Irving, you can find details here.

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