Euthanasia guidelines to undergo interim update

Published on October 26, 2018

The AVMA is preparing to release a ninth update to our Guidelines for the Euthanasia of Animals, and we’ll be sharing a first look at proposed changes during the 2018 Humane Endings Symposium, which takes place next week outside Chicago.

Originally published in 1963, the AVMA Guidelines for the Euthanasia of Animals are globally recognized as representing best practices in humanely ending animals’ lives when necessary. The guidelines undergo a full update at least every 10 years, but interim updates are provided when any substantive changes in the landscape occur. The coming update is a result of important research advances that make new techniques and equipment available, and that impact our recommendations.

The interim update is anticipated to include updates to specific euthanasia methods, such as the use of CO2 for aquatic species, and physical technique improvements, such as captive bolt positioning and direction for animals used for the production of food and fiber. Also proposed are changes in how some euthanasia techniques are categorized and the conditions for their use. Human responses to the euthanasia process will also receive additional attention as part of the update.

The interim update is scheduled to be released in 2019, but an early overview of proposed changes will be presented for attendees at the 2018 Humane Endings Symposium, taking place November 2-4.

There’s still time to attend the Humane Endings Symposium

The Humane Endings Symposium will bring together experts from a variety of disciplines to present the latest research and information on ethically and scientifically-based methods of euthanasia, slaughter, and depopulation. The symposium will explore a wide range of topics, including the psychological effects on veterinarians of ending animals’ lives, considerations during disaster response, and planning for emergencies. There’s still time to register for this unique event, but not for long: Registration closes October 31.

Attendees will hear renowned experts – including AVMA euthanasia panel member Temple Grandin – share practical experience in end-of-life decision making across a variety of species and under a range of conditions. You’ll also get an overview of the much-anticipated AVMA Guidelines for the Depopulation of Animals. Plus, the symposium is approved for 19 hours of CE credit.

If you’re interested in learning more about how the AVMA formulates its guidance on humane endings and would like to contribute to the conversations that help shape that guidance, you should consider attending this important event. You can learn more and register here.

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