Calgary Humane Society employs a team of Provincially appointed Peace Officers, whose mandate is to enforce the Animal Protection Act of Alberta in the City of Calgary.  Concerns of animal abuse, neglect and abandonment are investigated thoroughly with a focus on improving the situation of every animal encountered through a combination of education, compliance and enforcement.  In severe cases animals may be seized and/or charges laid.

Who To Call?

Animal issues in Calgary:

Calgary Humane Society – Protect animals from people

  • Abuse, neglect or abandonment of animal
  • Call 403-205-4455
  • Report online

Calgary Animal & Bylaw Services – Protect people from animals

  • Barking, bites, strays, licensing etc.
  • Call 311

Calgary Police Service

  • Threats to kill an animal, poisoning, bestiality (Criminal Code)
  • After hours coverage (7PM – 8AM where animal cruelty has resulted in likelihood of grievous injury or death)
  • Call 403-266-1234 or 911

Fish and Wildlife

  • Dangerous wildlife
  • Poaching
  • Call 403 297-6423

Animal Cruelty outside of Calgary or Edmonton

City of Edmonton

  • Edmonton Humane Society
  • Call 780-491-3517

Anywhere outside of Calgary or Edmonton

  • Alberta SPCA
  • Call 1-800-455-9003
  • RCMP
  • Call local detachment or 911

What Do We Investigate?

The Protection and Investigations department investigates, on average, 1350 public concerns of animal abuse, neglect and abandonment.  In addition to these complaint based investigations, the team also has legislated inspection authorities where animals are for sale, hire or exhibition including pet stores, rodeos and circuses.  Concerns causing distress to an animal that are investigated, include:

  • Lack of adequate: Food (starvation or malnutrition), Water, Shelter (protection from injurious heat or cold), Veterinary care, Space (overcrowding), Ventilation (unsanitary conditions)
  • Physical abuse
  • Abandonment
  • Practicing veterinary medicine without a license


Animal Cruelty Laws

Animal Protection Act
Burden of Proof: Beyond a reasonable doubt
Strict liability – Intent is not required for a charge under the Animal Protection Act. The only defense is due diligence. .
Offense: Allowing or causing an animal to be in distress
Maximum penalty: $20,000 fine and/or prohibition from owning or caring for animals


Criminal Code

Canadian Criminal Code
Burden of Proof: Beyond a reasonable doubt
Intent or recklessness required
Offense(s): Most common sections;

  • Kill, maim, wound, or injure an animal without lawful excuse
  • Place poison in a location easily consumed by animals kept for a lawful purpose
  • Cause unnecessary pain, suffering or injury to an animal
  • Abandon an animal in distress or willfully neglect or fail to provide suitable and adequate food, water, shelter and care for it
  • Uttering threats to kill, poison or injure an animal that is the property of any person

Maximum penalty: 5 years incarceration or $10,000 fine. Prohibition from owning or caring for animals