Massachussets Govenor Signs Bill Banning Devocalization of Dogs and CatsPublished April 25, 2010
In March, 2010, I wrote a blog item lauding the State of Massachusetts' House of Representatives for their pioneer action by passing the pending bill, H.B. 344, concerning the devocalization of dogs and cats. It was then sent on to the Senate for further action.
On April 1, the Massachusetts Senate courageously passed HB 344, ignoring the major efforts and protests filed by the Massachusetts Veterinary Medical Association. Following the Senate passage, Thursday, April 22, Massachussets Governor Deval Patrick signed the bill into law. More than 200 veterinarians statewide, animal shelter workers and animal behavior experts all endorse Logan's Law.
So it gives me great pleasure to announce that this humane and urgent bill aimed to protect both species has finally become State law. These surgeries are now legally banned unless there is a compelling medical condition which requires a veterinarian to perform the procedure in order to save the animal's life.
The bill named "Logan 'Law" honors the show dog devocalized by his breeder, who subsequently gave him up when he no longer was winning blue ribbons
Leslie Burg, founder and spokesperson of the Friends of the Plymouth Pound rescued Logan, who relentlessly wheezed, rasped and gagged due to having undergone this "convenience" surgery. Ms.Fitzpatrick said, "Logan did nothing to deserve this. His vocal cords were cut for his breeder's selfish best interest, so she could run her business in a residential neighborhood."
According to Leslie Burg, spokesperson for the Coalition to Protect and Rescue Pets, devocalization surgery is not uncommon and breeders frequently opt to have their dogs devocalized, even without complaints from neighbors or law authorities. They enjoy the profits of selling dogs, but do not want to deal with their noise. Some sled-dog hobbyists and show dog exhibitors resort to devocalizing their animals as well. Ms. Burg added, "Of the hundreds of devocalized dogs our volunteers have encountered or learned about since we filed this bill 15 months ago, only a handful were ordered devocalized by pet owners. Nearly all the devocalized dogs were kept in groups for profit or hobby, then given up when no longer useful to the owner. Some cats are devocalized too."
Watch the compelling video uploaded to YouTube by Enlightenment1, which clearly and explicitly demonstrates the importance of the final passage of Logan's Law, a major contribution which will positively affect the welfare of dogs and cats in Massachusetts. Hopefully with the passage of this bill, other states will follow the humane and compassionate legislation the state enacted.
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Photo: Siberian Sled Dogs: Wickipedia