The AVMA Guidelines on Euthanasia is a highly respected, authoritative document that is used by everyone from the federal government to practicing veterinarians. Euthanasia is the act of inducing humane death in an animal. And it is our responsibility as veterinarians and human beings to ensure that, if an animal’s life is to be taken, it is done with the highest degree of respect, and with an emphasis on making the death as painless and distress free as possible. The AVMA guidelines set criteria for euthanasia, specify appropriate euthanasia methods and agents, and are intended to assist veterinarians in their exercise of professional judgment.
Our guidelines have recently been revised, with input from more than 70 veterinary experts and nonveterinarians who comprise the AVMA Panel on Euthanasia, as well as the staff in our Animal Welfare Division. That draft revision is now ready for your input.
We’re inviting you to comment on any or all portions of the document, which is posted on our website. We will be accepting comments through Aug. 1. Your input into the revised draft of the AVMA Guidelines on Euthanasia is a vital part of the review process, and we urge you to take a look and let us know your thoughts. Once all the comments have been gathered, they will be part of the final discussions leading up to publication of a new set of euthanasia guidelines.