BC SPCA member seen in an undated photo. (BC SPCA photo)

Horrific cat death prompts Kelowna man to demand province give funding to BC SPCA

The kitten was found dead with a string tied to its neck at one end and a thumb-tack at the other

More than a month after a cat was found dead in a Kelowna alleyway, the BC SPCA’s investigation into the matter is still ongoing.

On Sept. 23, a Kelowna woman stumbled upon the horrific scene on her way to the bus stop.

Walking through an alleyway in Rutland, the woman found a dead kitten that looked to have been hanged from a fence. She found the cat lying on the ground with a string around its neck and a thumbtack on the other end.

“I saw this little wet thing lying on the side of the road,” said Julie Grace Fidler on the morning of the incident.

“I thought it was a squirrel at first but then I got a little bit closer and realized it was a cat. I thought maybe it was a homeless cat or something but then I got closer and saw it had a string around its neck and there was a tack at the end of the string.”

One Kelowna man, whose business helped raise a $1,000 award to anybody who can provide information that leads to an arrest in the case, sent a letter to Premier John Horgan’s office regarding the issue.

In the letter, the man said the fault lies in a lack of funding and a lack of RCMP support in cases of animal violence.

“As you know the BC SPCA is powerless without the RCMP and if the police aren’t doing anything, neither is the SPCA,” read the letter.

“Kathy Woodward of the BC SPCA is well suited to undertake this yet until the police and government address this violent crime toward an animal as serious as it was, these institutions sit idle and not used for exactly why they exist.”

A reply came from Wes Shoemaker, the deputy minister of the B.C. Ministry of Agriculture — the ministry responsible for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act. He said while the BC SPCA is not required to obtain the assistance of police in cruelty investigations, there are many situations where the involvement of police is necessary to maintain peace and safety, as well as obtain additional information relevant to the case.

“Animal cruelty investigations are contingent on receiving additional information which can sometimes add to the time involved,” said Wes Shoemaker.

“I am confident the appropriate steps are being followed in the investigation of this case.”

The BC SPCA’s regional manager of cruelty investigations, Brian Kijowski confirmed an investigation is still taking place but public assistance would be helpful.

“I believe that somebody has information out there,” he said.

“If they could give our hotline a call, that would be greatly appreciated.”

Anyone with information on the incident is encouraged to call the local police and the BC SPCA cruelty hotline at 1-855-622-7722.

READ MORE: Tortured cat found with string around its neck in Kelowna alleyway

READ MORE: Kelowna resident offering reward for information on cat killer


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