CORNWALL, ONTARIO--(Marketwired - Sept. 25, 2014) - On August 26, 2014, Melissa Donais, of Cornwall, Ontario, pleaded guilty to permitting an animal to be in distress under the Ontario SPCA Act by failing to provide the care necessary for the animal's general welfare.

On July 15, 2014, the Ontario SPCA received a complaint regarding a black and white cat named "Bandit", who was reported as injured, drooling and unable to eat.

An Ontario SPCA Officer arrived at the residence and spoke to Ms. Donais who denied owning the cat. Attempts to locate the cat were initially unsuccessful until later that evening when the Ontario SPCA received another call stating the cat was back in the area. Neighbors identified the cat as belonging to Ms. Donais.

The cat eventually returned to the residence, was caught by Ms. Donais and then placed in a carrier supplied by the Ontario SPCA for inspection. Agents noted he was drooling, his lower jaw was hanging open and there was an odor of infection and rotten flesh coming from his mouth. The cat was thin, dirty and unsteady on his feet. Ms. Donais finally admitted to owning the cat and Bandit was voluntarily surrendered to the Ontario SPCA.

The cat was immediately taken to a veterinary hospital and examined. Among other issues, the cat was found to have part of his tongue missing, was dehydrated, emaciated and had an oral infection.

Ms. Donais was sentenced and received a lifetime prohibition from owning, caring for or living with any animal. She was also ordered to pay $100 restitution to the Ontario SPCA and placed on two years probation. The Ontario SPCA was granted access to her property to ensure compliance.

"There is no reason an animal should have to suffer without the care necessary to its general welfare," says Steve Toy, Senior Inspector. "The Ontario SPCA is always available to assist with any concerns an animal owner may have."

Reporting animal cruelty is as simple as dialing 310-SPCA or emailing your concern to

Ontario SPCA and Humane Society:

Protecting animals since 1873, Ontario SPCA is Ontario's Animal Welfare organization. A registered charity comprised of over 50 Communities.

Since 1919, when Ontario's first Animal Welfare legislation was proclaimed, the Ontario SPCA, with the help of its Communities, has been entrusted to maintain and enforce Animal Welfare legislation. The Act provides Ontario SPCA Agents and Inspectors with police powers to do so.

Ontario SPCA provides leadership in animal welfare innovations including introducing high-volume spay/neuter services to Ontario and opening the Provincial Education and Animal Centre.

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Contact Information:

Provincial Media Contact
Brad Dewar
Investigation & Communications Officer
Ontario SPCA, Provincial Office