Euthanasia letter was misleading

The animal-euthanasia letter from Terri David [“Vote for the Animals,” Sept. 24] does not tell the whole story. I trust Ms. David was not politically motivated to distort the real facts, which may be verified by going to the Department of Agriculture (Veterinary Division) Web site,, and selecting “Rules Review Commission approves euthanasia rules for animal shelters.” I will highlight the status as it now exists:

The new rules allow for three major methods of euthanasia:
• Intracardiac injection (Section .0500)—The most humane method.
• Carbon monoxide equipment (Section .0600)—The rules do not mandate this method; however, shelters that use it must comply with very strict rules on methods and equipment and inspections. Individual counties may elect to prohibit this method.
• Extraordinary circumstances (Section .0700)—When euthanasia cannot be accomplished at the shelter.

The present status on these new rules is that a final vote was taken by the Rules Committee on Oct. 16, and they will be forwarded to the General Assembly when it reconvenes in January. If the rules are not adopted, there will be unregulated euthanasia in animal shelters throughout the state.

So if you want to vote for the animals, get on the backs of your representatives (old or new). The existing commissioner of agriculture, Steve Troxler, has gone overboard to see that we clean up the inhumane, barbaric methods of animal euthanasia.

— Dennis K. Hoerber, chair
Kathleen F. Hoerber Memorial Foundation Board of Trustees,

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One thought on “Euthanasia letter was misleading

  1. Michele

    First of all, euthanasia in North Carolina animal shelters is not completely “unregulated.” Many lost animals in shelters are killed before their required hold time expires, instead of being provided with needed veterinary care. Pet owners may never know the truth, if their lost animals are killed before they have a chance to find them. Veterinary care is required under the Animal Welfare Act, which I believe falls under the Department of Agriculture.

    Statutes under Public Health Law and the Animal Welfare Act both state that animals are to be put to death by a method approved by the American Veterinary Medical Association, American Humane Association, or the Humane Society of the United States. None of these organizations “approve” of killing animals under 16 weeks of age, or animals with breathing problems, by inhalent gases such as carbon monoxide. Still, animal shelters across the state continue killing those animals in gas chambers.

    Record keeping requirements for shelters are also included in existing regulations, under 52J Administrative Code. Yet, many shelters are inspected and records approved, even though lots of required information may be missing.

    We need a change in leadership for the North Carolina Department of Agriculture. Please vote Ronnie Ansley for Agriculture Commissioner. For more information visit

    Michele King, Board Member
    North Carolina Coaliton for Humane Euthanasia

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