Could Kansas End Gas Chamber Euthanasia for Shelter Animals?
Animal advocates from across the state came together for earlier this month in Topeka, Kansas to support tougher laws to protect companion animals for Humane Lobby Day, which was sponsored by the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) and the Pet Coalition of Kansas.
ďPeople have come to Topeka from across Kansas to speak up for animals,Ē said Midge Grinstead, The HSUS’ Kansas state director. ďLegislators are recognizing that animal welfare is a high priority issue that enjoys bipartisan support from Kansas voters.Ē
One major point of the day was to support the Kansas Pet Animal Act (SB 57) with amendments included to protect pets.
According to the HSUS, the bill will help animals in a few ways:
Specifically, the bill would establish annual inspections of licensed pet breeding facilities, shelters, research facilities and other licensees; end the use of carbon monoxide chambers that are currently used to euthanize animals in certain shelters; ensure standards of cleanliness at licensed pet breeding and sheltering facilities; allow inspectors to view veterinary records of USDA licensed kennels; and increase representation of shelters and rescue groups within the Governorís Pet Animal Advisory board.
Banning gas chambers would be a big improvement in the state. Death by gassing is a slow, stressful and painful process that can take more than 30 minutes. Unconsciousness and death don’t occur until there is enough buildup of gas in the lungs, which can cause terrified animals to suffer needlessly and can take even longer for sick and pregnant or very young or old animals.† Many animals are also often gassed at once, which can lead to even more stress and aggression.
Pennsylvania banned gas chamber euthanasia this past October and joined a number of other states that have complete bans or regulations concerning the type of animals that can be gassed, including Arizona, California, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, New Jersey, New York, New Mexico, Oregon, Rhode Island, Tennessee, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia and Wyoming.
As for the rest of the bill helping animals, some are worried that it doesn’t do much to protect animals used for breeding, while it also changes rules and increases licensing fees that would negatively impact shelters and rescues who operate independently.
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