According to federal transport regulations, the Health of Animals Act, Part XII, Sections 143, (1)(d) and (e), “No person shall transport or cause to be transported any animal in a railway car, motor vehicle, aircraft, vessel, crate or container if injury or undue suffering is likely to be caused to the animal by reason of undue exposure to the weather or inadequate ventilation.” Yet, in Canada, farmed animals are routinely transported in the winter during subzero temperatures in inadequate conditions, and often during the coldest times of the day (early morning, night).
Although temperature extremes are common in Canada (read our article about heat stress), the transportation industry has yet to take proper measures to mitigate or prevent the risks such extremes cause to the animals, and equip their trucks with heating systems to maintain proper temperatures in the winter, and forced air to dissipate the moisture forming inside the trailer (and help animals cool in the summer heat). At present, Canadian trucks only have improper passive ventilation resulting from the movement of the vehicles, and often inadequate tarps (in the case of poultry trucks) or vent/porthole covers (in the case of livestock trailers). CETFA has also documented many instances where animals were transported in freezing temperatures with no tarps or covers whatsoever.
If you see farm animals transported in inadequate conditions or suffering from cold stress, please contact the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA), the government body responsible for the enforcement of farm animal transport regulations, to report your concerns. Provide details of your observations (location, time of the day, name of the transport company, and D.O.T number printed on the rig, as well as the species transported, the outside temperature (and if possible wind chill) and the signs of cold stress you observe).