**** NS SPCA Media Release
Dartmouth Woman Sentenced for Animal Cruelty
Vanessa Wilson-Hatt, a 31-year-old woman from Dartmouth, has been sentenced with animal cruelty under the Animal Protection Act of Nova Scotia. Wilson-Hatt was charged in March 2019 with permitting a dog to be in distress, contrary to section 21 (1); failing to provide adequate medical attention when the animal was wounded or ill, contrary to section 22 (b); confining an animal to an area of unsanitary conditions contrary to section 22 (d); and failing to comply with an order contrary to section 18 (D) of the Animal Protection Act of Nova Scotia.
The Nova Scotia SPCA received a complaint that there were two pets living at a residence wearing a “cone” on their heads for nearly a year. In February 2019, after several attempts, SPCA Enforcement Officers viewed Wilson-Hatt’s dog, Bowie, and her cat. Bowie was itching relentlessly and missing most fur. The cat did have fleas but was not in the same poor condition as the dog. An Order to Comply was issued to Wilson-Hatt to take her cat and dog to a veterinarian for treatment. When Wilson-Hatt failed to comply, a recheck was completed. Bowie was suffering in distress and seized.
An appeal was filed with the Animal Cruelty Appeal Board and a hearing was held on March 15, 2019. The appeal board upheld the SPCA’s decision to seize the dog and custody of Bowie was awarded to the Nova Scotia SPCA. Bowie endured several weeks of treatment for her skin condition and was placed in foster care. Bowie’s foster family adopted her and she is thriving. Bowie has grown back all her missing fur.
Wilson-Hatt pled guilty to failing to comply with an order, section 18 (D) and failing to provide adequate medical attention contrary to section 22 (b) of the Animal Protection Act of Nova Scotia. She was sentenced to a four-year prohibition on owning any companion animals with the exception of her one cat that must be taken for a medical examination every 12 months for the duration of the prohibition. Wilson-Hatt was also ordered to pay a fine of $150.00 for each count she pled guilty to.
The Nova Scotia SPCA urges you to report acts of animal cruelty by contacting our confidential toll-free hotline at 1-888-703-7722.
Proudly open-admission and no-kill, the Nova Scotia SPCA operates on a policy of zero tolerance for animal cruelty. Their shelters provide medical care, rehabilitation, spay and neuter services and re-homing opportunities for thousands of animals in Nova Scotia every year.