Spay & Neuter Clinic in Summer Beaver, Ontario 2016
In August of 2016, Dr. Ken Storimans and Dr. Justin Levy travelled to Summer Beaver, Ontario to volunteer their time spaying and neutering and caring for dogs on a First Nations reserve in Northern Ontario.
Nibinamik First Nation, also know as Summer Beaver, is a small Oji-Cree community located about 600 km north of Thunder Bay, Ontario with a population of about 500 members. It’s a fly in community in the summer and connected to the rest of the province by an ice road during the winter months.
Summer Beaver began as an intentional community in 1975 when a group of Anglican people, related by kinship, decided to leave nearby Lansdowne House, a Catholic settlement. Violence reached epic proportions in Lansdowne House in the 1970s, and the community was divided along religious lines. The Summer Beaver people felt they could make a better life for themselves and their children back at Nibinamik Lake. The Canadian government was wary of this move and offered nothing in the way of support for quite some time. Nibinamik was not recognized as a reserve until recently.
Dr. Levy and Storimans travelled with the group, Friends of Animush, a dog rescue that promotes spaying, neutering and medical care for dogs and cats in remote towns and villages in Northern Ontario that otherwise have no access to veterinary care. The trip lasted a week and we were able to spay, neuter and vaccinate about 50 dogs and a handful of cats.