B.C. petting zoo operator charged with animal cruelty

Five horses, three pigs, two mini-horses, a lamb, an alpaca, a goat and a peacock were among 15 animals found in distress at the petting zoo, according to the SPCA.
Image Credit: B.C. SPCA

REVELSTOKE - The owner of a petting zoo in Revelstoke is facing more than 20 counts of animal cruelty in what the SPCA is calling “a very sad case.”

James Richard Bruvall, the owner of the Revelstoke Petting Zoo, was charged with 24 counts of animal cruelty under a combination of the Criminal Code and the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act following a B.C. SPCA investigation, states a media release from the SPCA.

SPCA constables removed 15 animals, including one deceased pig, from the property during a warrant executed in July 2017. 

The other animals found to be in distress included five horses, three pigs, two mini-horses, a lamb, an alpaca, a goat and a peacock, the SPCA says, adding the animals were suffering from lack of adequate food, shelter and veterinary care.

“We are very pleased that charges have been approved against Mr. Bruvall as this is a very sad case where profits were clearly placed before the welfare of the animals in his care,” Marcie Moriarty, chief prevention and enforcement officer for the B.C. SPCA says in the release. “This individual was running a petting zoo and trail riding company using compromised animals and allowing them to suffer.”

All but one of the animals have been adopted into new homes, Moriarty says.

“We are still looking for a home for the goat, but we are hopeful that a new guardian will be found soon,” she says.

If convicted, Bruvall faces a maximum sentence of up to five years in jail, a $75,000 fine and up to a lifetime ban on owning animals.

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