Vernon dog rescue closes doors amid investigation | iNFOnews | Thompson-Okanagan's News Source

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Vernon dog rescue closes doors amid investigation

One of many dogs posted for adoption on the Saving Grace Dog rescue website.
Image Credit: Submitted
December 04, 2015 - 5:00 PM

VERNON - A controversial dog rescue in Vernon that has been the focus of numerous allegations in recent months appears to be shutting down.

Sources say the Saving Grace Dog Rescue is closing and its dogs are being taken in by other agencies.

The closure coincides with an investigation into numerous issues at the shelter, recounted by former volunteers who felt compelled to share their stories.

The exact reason behind the closure remains unclear. The society announced on Dec. 2 its president and founder, Kimberly Gillis, was stepping down due to health issues.

A statement posted by the rescue says "due to unforeseen circumstances Saving Grace is unable to continue and remain in accordance with non-profit society regulations, therefore cannot be run at this time.’

Over the last couple of days, the rescue’s Facebook page has been removed from the public domain, and all adoptable pets removed from the website, which currently states no dogs are available.

When contacted, a volunteer said all the society’s members have resigned and declined to comment any further.

Repeated attempts to reach the rescue’s former president for comment have been unsuccessful.

In a series this weekend, we bring you a behind the scenes look at how the rescue was being run. On Saturday, you’ll hear why one volunteer accuses the society of flipping dogs for profit, volunteers being asked to ‘scoop’ dogs from people’s yards, inadequate vet care, and questionable financial practices at the rescue. 

On Sunday, we explore the business of ‘dog rescues’ and the issues animal welfare advocates have with home-based rescues like Saving Grace.

Look for the next instalments of this story Dec. 5 and 6 on

Image Credit: Submitted

— This story was updated at 11:46 a.m. Dec. 5 to add a link to part one in the series.

To contact a reporter for this story, email Charlotte Helston at or call 250-309-5230. To contact the editor, email or call 250-718-2724.

News from © iNFOnews, 2015

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