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Loss of heat, carbon monoxide leak leads to closure of Lower Mainland animal shelter

Maple Ridge BC SPCA branch manager is hoping to have the shelter fully open again by the weekend

The Maple Ridge branch of the BC SPCA was forced to close over the weekend due to a heating failure and a carbon monoxide leak.

Branch manager Kahlee Demers said the heating system went down on the Saturday and then on Sunday, as they were deciding what to do, there was a minor carbon monoxide leak. Technicians were called in who discovered levels of carbon monoxide that were higher than normal, but not dangerous, she explained.

By Sunday afternoon, though, they decided to move all the animals out including 11 dogs, four rabbits, three cats, and a puppy.

Currently the shelter, located along Jackson Road by 102 Avenue, is no longer unsafe to be in, she said, but it is still not an ideal environment for animals to be in right now.

A new heating unit has since been purchased and installed on Monday, Jan. 8.

“We are going to give it a few days for it to actually heat up,” she explained.

Although the shelter doors are locked, there are still people in the building to help those who either need to access the pet food bank or to drop off donations. They are still answering phones and responding to email.

RELATED: 6 puppies surrendered to Chilliwack SPCA just before Christmas

For anything urgent, they are asking people to call their emergency line at 604-841-2642.

Demers is grateful to the fosters who came forward to take in some of the animals. But most animals were transferred to other shelters in the Lower Mainland.

“All the way to West Vancouver,” she noted, adding that the shelters have put a pause on the Drive for Lives program where animals are transferred to different shelters to increase their chances of adoption.

ALSO: Soaring demand has BC SPCA food banks bearing the brunt

A lot of the shelters this week, she said, won’t be accepting animals from up north.

Demers is hoping to have the shelter up and running again by this weekend.

For more information about the Maple Ridge branch or to donate to the location go to or call 604-463-9511.

Colleen Flanagan

About the Author: Colleen Flanagan

I got my start with Black Press Media in 2003 as a photojournalist.
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