Accountability Law for “No Kill Shelters” proposed in Florida

The Florida legislature is considering a law to account for the deposition of each animal that comes into a humane society or shelter. The premise is to validate “no kill” shelters and to make accountable, humane societies and shelters, as to what is the final deposition of an animal in the State of Florida. Remember, that like other states, animals from humane societies and shelters can be sent to research facilities to be used in research or to academic institutions to be used in their studies as well.

In the State of South Carolina, the laws are the same and that is why shelters in Greenville, SC and Columbia, SC have supplied cats to a research company in the Hodges, South Carolina area. We are allegedly talking more than 100 cats to a research facility with the company to expand the cat population to 200 cats and 200 dogs. In addition, allegedly all the dogs are to come from local humane societies and shelters. So, the “no kill” designation for a shelter means that the animals were not killed but sent off to research. Speaking with the local USDA veterinarian, she approved of the acquisition of these animals for research and mentioned that as well, dogs and cats from shelters are sent to the local Vet Tech colleges for the students to work on them and learn from them as well. This is all perfectly legal, though philosophically hard to understand.

It leads one to wonder with all the requests for dollars to help your local humane society and shelters and all the pleading and heart breaking stories that are presented for you to donate, that the label “no kill” is being exploited. How many of those cats sent off to research could have found good homes to live in, but now have no other life than that of a research facility. Where do the pets from your shelter go to? Is it a “no kill” shelter? And is it really a “no kill” shelter.

For the Floridian readers, I urge you to support the accountability law for “no kill” shelters and for any shelter or humane society in Florida. For those of you in South Carolina, I would urge you to present such a law in the state and to further place a law that animals from shelters or humane societies cannot be placed into research facilities or academic facilities. Contact your State HSUS representative and urge her to lobby for such legislation. This needs to be a nationwide law that animals in humane societies and shelters must be accounted for and cannot be sent off to research facilities under a “no kill” designation. I urge you to lobby in your state for this change to the animal laws in your state.

Dr. Manda DVM, MS, MBA, CVPM, is a full-time emergency veterinarian, former veterinary hospital owner, pet food executive, and successful entrepreneur. He consults to the pet food, animal health, and veterinary marketplace both nationally and internationally.  At home, he has three cats who request all of his free time.

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