On March 4, the NYS Assembly overwhelmingly passed a bill that would ban devocalization - the cruel act of cutting vocal cords just to stifle a dog's or cat's voice. Now the companion Bill S2271 has to make it through the Senate and needs your support.
In 2012, Senate leaders—lobbied by the state veterinary association, whose members profit from devocalization—refused to bring the bill to the floor so it died without even getting a vote.
Don’t let that happen again, and don’t let the Senate add amendments. They are an insidious way to kill this humane legislation and worse, legitimize an act of cruelty. According to Coalition to Protect and Rescue Pets, the national authority on this issue, allowing devocalization as a "last resort/final alternative" is a loophole, unenforceable and meritless. It could cause even more animals to be devocalized by legitimizing this act of cruelty!
Coalition to Protect and Rescue Pets led the successful campaign to ban devocalization of dogs and cats in Massachusetts and is now leading the effort in New York State.
They say no one needs to cut healthy vocal cords or kill a healthy animal for barking or meowing--there are better, more responsible and far kinder options. But no vet can know, some won't ask, if the owner tried them. Even receipts for training don't mean the advice was followed. Cutting vocal cords is easier for the owner, profitable for the vet. Only the animal suffers. Learn about other loopholes here.
WHY DO ANIMALS NEED STRONG DEVOCALIZATION BANS?
Veterinarians say devocalization is always dangerous, regardless of the vet's skill, the instrument used and the surgical route, through the neck or the oral cavity. Even a little scarring, a normal outcome of any surgery, can be deadly or cause lifelong suffering when it forms in the dog's or cat's throat.
And there’s no benefit for animals, not even the claimed secure home. Shelter and rescue executives say devocalized dogs and cats are euthanized and abandoned for the same reasons as any other, or because the cost of treating complications like airway blockage is prohibitive.
Tell the NYS Legislature: The only ethical reason ever to perform vocal cord surgery on dogs and cats is to treat a physical ailment causing the animal medical harm.
To perform it for any other reason is an act of cruelty. Pass S2271 without amendments and enact a solid devocalization ban now!
As leaders of the NYS Senate, you have the power to protect dogs and cats in your state from a practice widely and rightly considered an act of extreme cruelty: devocalization, the cutting of vocal cord tissue just to stifle an animal's voice.
Animal rescue professionals and concerned veterinarians say this procedure is always dangerous, always cruel and never necessary. The claim that it's a "final alternative to euthanasia" is a false choice!
No one needs to cut healthy vocal cords or kill a healthy animal for barking or meowing. There are many effective, humane and far more responsible solutions, with rehoming a kinder option for those who won't pursue them.
I urge you to exercise your power for the betterment of animals and humans in New York by ensuring that Senate Bill 2271, prohibiting devocalization, becomes law this session as it was introduced, without amendments. Changes would effectively kill the bill.
Similar legislation was not brought to the Senate floor last year, even after the Assembly passed the companion bill by a vote of 138-4. This year, the Assembly again voted overwhelmingly for humane treatment of animals.
Please make 2013 the year that the Senate also moves to protect our "best friends" from a risky elective surgery they don't need and are helpless to refuse. Devocalization is animal cruelty, not animal rescue.
Keep up the great work. Look what you've accomplished!
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