This Environmental Needs and Behavioural Health website is for you. You can save lives with this resource

You can make animals more comfortable, and provide a humane and healthy environment for them with this website.

Imagine what it’s like for them…

“Enrichment and stress reduction must be given the same significance as other components of animal care and should not be considered optional” –Canadian Standards of Care in Animal Shelters: Supporting ASV Guidelines


The Canadian Standards of Care in Animal Shelters

The Canadian Standards of Care in Animal Shelters recognizes the Association of Shelter Veterinarians Guidelines for Standards of Care in Animal Shelters to be directly applicable to animal sheltering facilities in Canada. These Guidelines are based on the concept of the Five Freedoms (developed in the U.K. in 1965), which are recognized and accepted to have broad application across species, and identify the fundamental needs of all animals regardless of setting.

The Five Freedoms


5 Pillars of a Health-Promoting Animal Environment

The following five pillars are applicable for all species encountered in the animal centre environment:

The animals in our care are exposed to extremely stressful environments. They are subjected to a wide array of psychological stressors, including:
  • Loss of control of their environment
  • Unpredictability of daily animal centre activity
  • Lack of routine
  • Confinement
  • Unfamiliar people
  • Noise
  • And many others

We can dramatically improve their experience by:

  • Identifying their individual environmental needs and then,
  • Implementing strategies to reduce stress and provide enrichment