Ottawa Humane Society
2.7 out of 5 stars.
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Ottawa Humane Society Employee Reviews

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Management will push you to your limits with very little support. Colleagues are great , animals are great, the stress and micro managing, not great!
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I had to complain many times when management was not wearing a mask. Employees would not keep 6 feet distance. Some employees would just come and sit in a cubicle next to you without getting management approval. You had to find disinfectants, gloves, and paper towels on your own. The place was not cleaned regularly.
Pros
Free lunches
Cons
Management does not support employees, low pay, low morale
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The directors will push you to your limits with very little support, and take credit for all of your ideas or hard work. Colleagues are great , animals are great, the stress and micro managing, is very prominent and exhausting. They do not trust their employees or empower them to make positive change. They will tell you to refer to "SOP's" rather than taking the time to actually train you. Once you defer from an SOP, they will SLAM you for making any mistakes, even if you are new.
Pros
Animals
Cons
Everything
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It’s very rewarding to work here, although stressful as well. The animals make it worth it, unless your manager/supervisor sucks. A lot of amazing people work here, and the overall atmosphere is great.
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Managers and supervisors aren't leaders here and there's a manager for every single little thing.. they only care about making money and looking good and being bossy. Customers to them are just numbers on paper and managers and some supervisors use intimidation and fear to keep workers quiet and treat them like enemies. Management blames staff for the weekly turnover but humiliates staff in front of customers.. union unhelpful. Pays good and fur cuddles are nice.. Keep your head down you'll be okay...if not you'll be depressed and burn out very quick.
Pros
Animals, nice team, pays good
Cons
Managers and supervisors are bullies and there's weekly turnover of staff
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I’ve been working there for a decade. I love it. Staff is great, including management. I’ve never had a problem going to my boss for help and for any issues. I think people that complain about management are the ones who are too intimidated to actually speak to them. We are all people and we have the same goal at OHS. Whether you want to work there as a career or “just a job”, you get what you put in. The hard workers who are humble and compassionate really show. Great place.
Pros
Flexible shifts, cross training intedepartments, friendly and caring staff
Cons
Can be long hours, seasonally stressful/ high volume of animals
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Working with the animals is fantastic and very rewarding. Also my coworkers were amazing! The only issue with working here is the management. They are very rude to their employees and will belittle you any chance they get. This results in a very stressful and toxic work environment. Whenever an issue is brought to their attention, it is played down and pushed under the rug. They will do a staff survey to see where they can improve, but when they get negative results they blame it on part-time staff who are jealous of full-time workers. I would strongly advise people against working here if you are looking for a fun and stress free job.
Pros
The animals, coworkers
Cons
The managers, no room to move up in the organization, stress
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Training at the beginning is fair and you are expected to work independently afterwards for majority of your shift but staff is around to assist you if required as well as other co workers on your shift. Expectation consist of not only walking the dogs but provided and implementing obedience training to the dogs, as well as enjoy some cuddle time! :)
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I love working with the animals and I have such awesome co workers, but unfortunately the OHS has a horrible team of managers (with the exception of 1). Very gossipy work environment. I cannot confidently say I even trust my manager when it comes to anything personal. The management team gives massive amounts of work with really unrealistic due dates. The workload is insane so it is hard to focus on any additional projects. The pay is really good considering what vet clinics / pet stores pay their employees. Shifts are long and you are rarely going to leave on time during high peek season (April-early November). Over time is not always approved to you will be "volunteering" hours of your time for the sake of the animals. Compassion fatigue is very much a real thing. If you work here, make sure to actually use the vacation time. Managers can be a bit tough on vacation if you aren't booking off time that is not "convenient" for them.
Pros
Working with animals, good pay
Cons
Management team, stressful
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Everybody thinks that working at the Humane Society is basically just receiving puppy/kitten kisses and cuddles. Though we do get to do that (pretty often I must say) there are lots, tons actually, of other aspects to working here. I’m going to breakdown me review into different topics. It’s going to be: Managers/supervisors, staffing, pay, and the overall environment. I’m going to apologize in advance because this is going to be pretty lengthy. Let’s Begin! Staffing: The OHS can be a hectic place that is probably busier on certain days than a New York deli. There has been days where the line-ups are equivalent to a ride at Disney. Unfortunately this is due to the OHS creating management positions that really aren’t necessary and taking away the budget for staffing the employees that actually help the animals. If you don’t mind being overwhelmed some days then this is a good place for you! Hey on the positive note, you’ll always have something to do! Another thing to add to this is if you’re looking for a full-time job, seriously go look somewhere else. Full-time is so rare and hard to get. You’ll most likely be getting 2 or 3 shifts a week. Managers/Supervisors: To me, the biggest Con of working here is the management. While some Managers are nice and greet you with a friendly (most times fake, while trying to remember what my name is) hello, other are just simply cold. They offer no support to their staff and will just be condescending from day one. My particular manager would rarely come out to help the team if we were overwhelmed and would just stay in their office - more...
Pros
The animals, the pay isn`t bad, coworkers are great
Cons
The managers, no room for growth, stressful
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I'm afraid that I only volunteered for this company for a short time. But while I was there, my co-volunteers and the environment were both positive and supportive.
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Gained extraordinary experience that I continue to use nearly 20 years later. Great staff and coworkers and overall a wonderful organisation, would totally recommend you apply!
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A great organization. Able to help animals overcome illness/injury and find new homes. Amazing workplace culture. I enjoy being part of the bigger picture and utilizing my skills/education on a daily basis.
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The co workers that you have are fantastic but management is not great. The compassion fatigue is very much present but you can usually count on your co workers to help you through it as they are going through the same things day in and day out.
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Management doesn't care about employees, bends the union guidelines when its in their favor but ignores them when its not. Pay is awful. Management gets paid 4 million who are about 20 people, while the whole shelter gets paid 2 million... Go figure! Might also want to look at your surveys where almost everyone in the shelter states that management is the issue there. Also would like to note that disregarding part time complaints and assuming that their issues are just, "they are mad because they aren't full-time". Quitting was so clear after that statement.
Pros
Play with animals
Cons
Management.
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I love my job at the Ottawa Humane Society and my co-workers, they are very compassionate people. The management however is very unprofessional and does not appreciate the dedicated staff that work there. There are a handful of full-time positions and even less part-time positions. Most staff are on an occasional status scrambling for shifts with no benefits and no hope of advancement. You are very much made to feel replaceable. They make it sound like it's one big happy family but it's very dysfunctional. It takes a strong person to witness abuse of animals on a daily basis but it takes a stronger person to tolerate management's abuse.
Pros
Rewarding work
Cons
Management is unprofessional
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At the OHS I worked with VTs and Vets alike. I worked with the sick cats and dogs. I helped clean the adoption center, I helped give medication, I help identify sick animals and gave TLC to many dogs and cats.
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I believe in the work the shelter provides for animals. My co workers are very strong individual The is no real typical in a day at the shelter as we never know what will come through the doors. Cleaning and maintaining health care is very important and also learning of the breeds and detailed information per situation. The most difficult part of the job is letting someone know that their beloved pet has passed on and to prepare for them to pick up the remains. As for management, it is unfortunate that they do not recognize staff and the compassion it takes to deal with these circumstances and seem to only look out for the income they can generate and not the staff.
Pros
pros- you learn everyday about new incoming animals and people
Cons
un professional and immature not properly trained management
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Comment – 21 July 2016
It's very sad to know their are people who work for the shelter in high positions that don't understand people let alone animals. Management is horrible. They need to be trained on how to coach and support their staff. Staff have difficulty doing their jobs properly if not supported properly. Management is to busy trying to make money and neglects the staff who work so hard.
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I have never been in a work place where everyone is so nice and make you feel like a family. Its the best feeling when you are going into work everyday that you will see all these smiling faces.
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My days with the OHS: do the rounds with the head VT and Veterinarian. Learn about another type of shelter medicine and participated in varies different surgery: Othro, Cardio., Amputations of limbs, and spay/neuter surgeries. Which I don't see very often at my work at the other shelters. Some parts of the management was well organized and worked as a team (Administration). But in some of the other sections their was a lot of confusion. All the staff were very kind to me and I really enjoyed working with them during my field placement. The hardest part of my job is when losing a patient or seeing animals that were so badly abused in all different ways. It was also hard to say good bye to everybody I worked with when my field placement ended. The most enjoyable part of my field placement was learning so very much in surgeries that I don't see so often and learning from all the Vets and all the medical information on their surgical specialty. That alone has no price for all all that experience and knowledge that I will bring with me in my profession.
Pros
Beautiful shelter and great staff to work with.
Cons
At times their was not good organization
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Wonderful co-workers. Work environment is satisfactory.
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