Locals who care about animals are encouraged to show up and hold signs, pass out flyers, or just to show support of removing the double gas chamber. The public is also encouraged to sign up to speak to commissioners about removing the chambers and switching to humane euthanasia by injection (EBI), the only humane way of euthanizing animals according to leading animal protection organizations, at the 6:00 commission meeting (http://www.co.randolph.nc.us/
Animal protection advocates consider gas chambers to be a barbaric method of destroying homeless pets. The animals are placed in a metal box without sedation. They have no idea what is happening to them and are terrified. The hiss of gas starts and they get dizzy and panic. Screams are heard and their organs start to shut down before they lose consciousness. The 25 or more minutes it takes to end their lives can be complete torture.
“We have to be the voice for the voiceless,” said Angela Wade-Allred, a rally organizer. “The Randolph County Animal Shelter needs an overhaul. They need to dismantle the barbaric gas chambers and only use humane euthanasia. They also need to work with more rescues, facilitate more adoptions, implement a low-cost spay and neuter program, and allow trap/neuter/
Most people have had pets and would not want to have them destroyed in a gas chamber if they need to be euthanized for terminal illness or suffering. Standard veterinarians use EBI with previous sedation.
In 2011, the Randolph County officials accepted a $3,000 grant (http://www.humanesociety.org/
Randolph County officials made the shocking choice to return the grant funds and keep using the double gas chamber. This only hurts the animals.
Rally organizers urge Randolph County officials to reconsider reversing their decision and do the right thing.
This method of destroying animals has been denounced by every national humane organization.
The American Humane Association has stated, “…euthanizing shelter animals by carbon monoxide or carbon dioxide is inhumane to the animal and harmful to humans. American Humane Association considers euthanasia by injection (EBI) to be the only acceptable and humane means of euthanasia for all shelter animals.” Source: http://www.americanhumane.org/
The Humane Society of the United States stated, "Carbon monoxide (CO) gas is, without question, an unacceptable method of euthanasia in states where shelters can legally obtain and administer sodium pentobarbital."
The Association of Shelter Veterinarians has stated, "...the use of carbon monoxide for individual or mass companion animal euthanasia in shelters is unacceptable due to significant humane, operational and safety concerns."
Please read their document available online at: http://www.sheltervet.org/
The American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) has stated that they no longer recommend gas for routine euthanasia of cats and dogs.
Gas chambers are not only inhumane for animals, but also pose a risk to shelter staff.
Carbon monoxide gas in high concentrations poses a risk to humans because it’s odorless, colorless, tasteless, and highly explosive. Released in a confined area, it can cause asphyxiation, organ damage, or coma. There have been incidences when people were injured or killed in shelters, including two shelters in North Carolina. In 2009, a shelter worker was put in the emergency room when a gas build-up caused the door of the Lincoln County, North Carolina shelter to explode open. In 2008, an explosion occurred in a gas chamber at Iredell County, North Carolina Animal Services. In 2000, a shelter worker died of asphyxiation while operating a gas chamber in Tennessee. And in 1997, a veterinarian was severely injured while operating a gas chamber in Illinois.
Some who oppose removing the gas chamber claim that there is no alternative for wild or dangerous animals. But organizations such as the American Humane Association have overcome this objection and many other concerns on a fact sheet comparing gas chambers vs. EBI on their website. These include cost (EBI is less expensive), safety (EBI is safer), and shelter worker preferences (EBI isn’t demoralizing)
And most counties no longer use this barbaric method to euthanize any animals. To date, only 11 counties out of 100 in North Carolina that still have a gas chamber. Recently several North Carolina animal shelters removed their chambers.
Animal advocates are concerned that Randolph County will be one of the last remaining counties using this barbaric method.
People who care about being more humane to animals are asked to attend this peaceful rally.