Box of guinea pigs dumped by Welland Canal
Five adults not capabale of surviving in the wild, says Strooband
‘‘ “There’s never a reason to dump them out and the person has now potentially committed an offence.” KEVIN STROOBAND Lincoln County Humane Society executive director
Five guinea pigs abandoned in a cardboard box next to the Welland Canal in Thorold are being cared for by the humane society, and officials want to know who dumped them.
Kevin Strooband, executive director of Lincoln County Humane Society, said the adult guinea pigs were left with no food or water in the box, which was spotted Tuesday by a concerned citizen driving on Welland Canals Parkway.
Whoever dropped off the guinea pigs had divided them by placing a smaller box inside the larger one.
“The person knew exactly what they were doing because they were separated by sex which is ideal for the small pocket pets because they breed quite prolifically,” Strooband said.
The humane society doesn’t know how long the guinea pigs were left by the canal, but Strooband said they aren’t equipped to survive in the wild.
The five appeared to be in good health when found. Strooband said they haven’t been handled a lot by humans because they’re “skittish” and try to run away when picked up but they can be socialized relatively easily.
“Clearly the person didn’t take a lot of interest in them,” he said.
“We see that with some frequency and if and when we do, we’ll take them in. There’s never a reason to
dump them out and the person has now potentially committed an offence.”
The humane society generally holds animals for 72 hours to be claimed. If no one comes forward, the guinea pigs will be adopted out, likely for $20 each.
Strooband said the humane society has seen an increase in small animals at the shelter, particularly domestic rabbits from the Western Hill area of St. Catharines where they were rapidly reproducing last year after some were believed to have been let loose. In the fall, the humane society had 60 domestic rabbits in foster homes, most of which were dropped off at the shelter.
Strooband is imploring people who can’t care for their animals to bring them to the humane society rather than abandon them. The shelter charges a fee but every case is judged on its own merit.
“Gone are the days when humane societies used to make you feel bad for coming in,” he said. “We recognize that people are doing the right thing by bringing them to us because what’s the next thing to do? It’s exactly what happened, just dump them.”
The humane society is asking anyone who has information about the guinea pigs to contact its shelter at 905-682-0767.
Karena.Walter @niagaradailies.com 905-225-1628 | @karena_standard
Animal care technician Alicia Walker holds three of five guinea pigs after a box of guinea pigs was discovered at a Thorold roadside and turned into Lincoln County Humane Society. The pets have been named Kanye, J.T. and Drake while two females have been named Camilla Covie-ello and Havvanah.