Help Ban Gas Chamber Euthanization of Shelter PetsPublished April 25, 2010
From an article published by the American Humane Association, "Currently, only nine states have laws that explicitly ban all forms of gassing for all types of animals in shelters (including ferals and wildlife): Arizona, Delaware, Illinois, New Jersey, New York, Oregon, Rhode Island, Washington, and Wyoming. Connecticut, Florida, Maine, Maryland, New Mexico, Tennessee, and Virginia have prohibited carbon dioxide and monoxide for shelter cats and dogs". Several other states are now considering banning "gas chambers" to euthanize unwanted shelter pets.
According to The American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) 2007 Guidelines on Euthanasia state: "Carbon monoxide is extremely hazardous for personnel because it is highly toxic and difficult to detect . . . The advantages of using barbiturates for euthanasia in small animals far outweigh the disadvantages. Intravenous injection of a barbituric acid derivative is the preferred method for euthanasia of dogs, cats, other small animals, and horses."
Euthanization by Injection, (EBI) is therefore not only the most humane method to euthanize shelter pets; it is also far safer for workers. Since carbon monoxide is colorless, odorless and tasteless and highly explosive, it presents an extreme danger to shelter workers.
Michigan House Bill HB 4263, The Humane Euthanasia of Shelter Animal Act, would ensure that when the state's unwanted or unadoptable shelter pets have to be euthanized, the procedure will only be performed using an injection of sodium pentobarbital. The bill was drafted by the American Humane and the State Bar of Michigan Animal Law Section, and is sponsored by Rep. Rick Jones. Michigan House Bill 4263 will go before the house on April 28, so time is of the essence.
It is important to take action quickly. If you reside in Michigan contact your representative requesting them to vote "yes" on the bill. You may also get involved by taking a few moments to visit the Care2 website and sign the petition. It is a very simple way to take action to demonstrate your support of the passage of this crucial legislation.
Thank you for helping.