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The cutting of vocal cords to mask a dog's or cat's voice is Cruel and Inhumane. Despite public outcry against devocalization in recent years, the AVMA Executive Board has proposed a new policy that will further entrench veterinary support for this practice, widely considered an act of animal cruelty.
The policy comes up for a vote the first week of January 2013.
Why is the AVMA lagging behind the compassion curve?
As a professional association, the AVMA is charged with protecting its members' interests. Some vets obviously devocalize because it is profitable. Others don't devocalize but oppose banning it; many fear that would lead to prohibition of other unnecessary, mutilating surgeries such as ear cropping, tail docking and declawing.
A small but growing number of vets are taking an unequivocal stand for humane treatment of animals. They're advocating for laws banning vocal cord surgery on dogs and cats except to treat a physical ailment causing the animal medical harm. The AVMA should too.