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You can’t build a patio in Ontario without a permit – so why can you run a zoo?

CAMILLE LABCHUK: ‘Ontario is the worst place in the country for animals in zoos. The province has long taken a hands-off approach to zoos, aquariums, and exotic animals more generally. You can’t build a patio in your backyard in Ontario without first getting a permit, yet it is still perfectly legal to open a zoo without getting a license, receiving training in animal care, or submitting to government inspection. (The province stipulates you must get a licence for having certain animals in captivity – but not to operate your zoo.) There are no zoo-specific regulations to protect animals or the public, and this lax legal regime leaves the province powerless to shut down a zoo – no matter how bad conditions might be for the animals confined inside. Not surprisingly, zoo animals are left to pay the price… Animal protection advocates have been demanding new rules since the 1980s, but those calls have gone unheeded by successive governments of all political stripes’. SOURCE…

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