Can you help develop the AVMA’s depopulation guidelines?

Are you or a colleague interested and expert in issues related to the depopulation of animals? We’re looking for nominations – including self-nominations – for experts to serve on the Working Groups of the AVMA’s Panel on Depopulation, which will draft a new guidance document that will be part of the AVMA’s Humane Endings series: The AVMA Guidelines for the Depopulation of Animals. Members of the AVMA Panel on Depopulation will be selected from among those chosen to participate on this panel’s working groups.

This panel’s working groups will develop guidance on techniques appropriate for mass depopulation as applicable to the following species/activities: poultry, cattle, swine, small ruminants, equids, aquaculture, companion animals (animal control and sheltering), laboratory animals, zoo and wild animals. We’re seeking a diverse group of Working Group members with demonstrable expertise in depopulation techniques and/or their application to one or more species and facility types. In addition, we’re also seeking a professionally credentialed ethicist to provide corresponding support for the panel and its working groups.

Nominations of experts to serve on the working groups or as the panel’s ethicist must be submitted by May 15. Additional details, including a nomination form, are available from the animal welfare section of our website.

In addition to personally considering your interest in becoming a member of one of the Panel’s Working Groups, we ask that you help us spread the word about this important initiative. Please pass this information along to colleagues whom you believe have the needed expertise to contribute to the effort. Participation on the working groups is open to both AVMA members and non-members, including non-veterinarians—we recognize this is a multi-disciplinary effort.

The need for guidelines on depopulation was identified by the AVMA Panel on Euthanasia during its creation of the 2013 edition of the AVMA Guidelines for the Euthanasia of Animals. In addition to recognizing the need for guidance on depopulation, the AVMA Panel on Euthanasia identified a need for the AVMA Guidelines for the Humane Slaughter of Animals, a guidance document that has already been developed by a separate panel and will be released later this year.

The AVMA appreciates the generous assistance of the U.S. Department of Agriculture, with which the AVMA has completed a cooperative agreement in support of the depopulation project.

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