THE ANIMAL ANTI-CRUELTY LEAGUE’S POLICY ON EUTHANASIA
Our Euthanasia policy is as per our policy booklet (Page 11) (Point 2.3), which states :
- The Animal Anti-Cruelty League is opposed to the euthanasia of fit and healthy animals, but accepts that humane destruction may at times, be necessary.
- The Animal Anti-Cruelty League accepts with great reluctance, that in the case of unwanted or stray animals it may be necessary to humanely destroy fit and healthy animals because good homes cannot be found for them. Where euthanasia is carried out it must be by trained operators using approved and humane methods. (Refer to the Animal Anti-Cruelty League inquiry into euthanasia 1993 and its euthanasia policies).
Time spent at our shelter:
As we are not a municipal pound but an independent animal welfare organization, we are able to keep animals for an indefinite period and during their stay with us, every effort is made towards successfully re-homing each and every one of them into a loving new home. It must, however, be understood that while every effort is made towards achieving this ‘happy outcomes goal’, there are times when due to the dynamics of kennel life and factors beyond our control, this is not always possible. There are, and will continue to be times when, due to these very factors, a decision has to be taken between the kennel, veterinary and behavioural staff where it would be in the best interests of the animal concerned, to be humanely euthanized by our compassionate and caring hospital staff, who ensure that the dignity of the animal always remains their priority. Sadly, we have to take responsibility for society’s inability to be responsible pet owners. Some of the factors influencing this decision, are –
- An innate aggression is evident in an animal and even after every effort has been made to alternate the kennelling for a more conducive fit, the animal remains aggressive and initiates fights;
- The animal behaviourist on staff has, after assessment, worked on problem areas in one-on one-sessions, and the animal’s behaviour cannot be modified;
- There is no longer any quality of life; the animal is not coping with kennel life and continually exhibits signs in support of this;
- The health of the animal/s is such that there is little or no chance of recovery, or prolonged/extended treatment would be too costly, or if pathology is infectious in nature
- Overcrowding (periodic i.e. Xmas, Easter, etc, when animals are more likely to be abandoned)
Moreover, it must be made clear that the decision to euthanize is never ever, taken lightly. You can never desensitize such a process and quite frankly, you never should. Our staff are here because they first and foremost, love and care about animals. We will always go that extra mile for every single one that comes into our shelter. Exercise runs are available for letting off steam; regular visits to grooming parlours are arranged to ensure that they are able to put their best paw forward; animal behaviour sessions are available as a means to improving behaviour, erasing trauma, etc, etc.
So fellow animal lovers and supporters we respectfully ask that you try not to judge us or other animal welfare organizations, too harshly. We endeavour, often under extremely difficult conditions, to do the very best that we can, and sometimes, this can be a very hard place to be in. We are a dedicated animal welfare organization** which has never purported to be a **pro life organization, and have always and will always continue to take every measure possible, to avoid arriving at a never easy or popular decision.
Pro life – right to life:
Means that no animal is euthanazed, unless it is severely suffering and cannot be saved
Animal Welfare Organization:
The position is that it is morally acceptable for humans to use non-human animals, provided that all adverse effects on animals are minimised as far as possible. Consideration should be given to their wellbeing and to the prevention of suffering of animals, especially when they are under the care of humans. The following are internationally recognized precepts of Freedoms that all animals should enjoy:
- Freedom from hunger and thirst
- Freedom from physical discomfort and pain
- Freedom from injury and disease
- Freedom from fear and distress
- Freedom to conform to essential behavioural patterns
Thank you for your understanding.