Deadline nears for comments on AVMA humane slaughter guidelines

Published on: Aug 29, 2013

The American Veterinary Medical Assn. (AVMA) is requesting member comments on a draft version of the AVMA "Guidelines for the Humane Slaughter of Animals" and reminds member veterinarians that the deadline on this comment period is Sept. 30.

The AVMA Panel on Humane Slaughter developed the guidelines to help veterinarians minimize pain and distress in hooved animals, poultry, rabbits and fish prior to and during slaughter. The document describes what conditions and actions the panel found to be appropriate, starting with the arrival of animals at a slaughter facility, and it includes details on regulations, oversight, training, facility design, animal movement and slaughter techniques.

Species-specific information is included, as is guidance on religious and ritual slaughter.

"An AVMA panel has put together these draft guidelines on humane slaughter, but this is just the first step in the approval process," explained Dr. Gail Golab, director of the AVMA Animal Welfare Division. "We need our members to come forward and offer their informed, professional, scientific and sensitive comments on these draft guidelines so we can incorporate their input and produce final guidelines that reflect the combined wisdom and expertise included in our association."

Members can view the draft document on the AVMA website at The AVMA will accept comments through Sept. 30.

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