Euthanasia

Position

The Alberta SPCA recognizes that euthanasia is appropriate in situations of humane necessity.

Definition

Euthanasia is the act of inducing a humane death in an animal with a minimum of fear, pain and distress.

Rationale

The Alberta SPCA condones only those methods of euthanasia that

  • are performed in a compassionate manner by qualified individuals
  • are appropriate to the species and condition of the animal
  • induce immediate and unequivocal loss of sensibility
  • cause the least possible pain, distress or suffering
  • use methods of restraint where appropriate and when immediate death follows

Humane necessity includes

  • debilitating disease, injury or infirmity
  • behaviour problems that limit quality of life or put humans or other animals at risk
  • overpopulation that may lead to suffering or distress to animals

Euthanasia may also be necessary to control outbreaks of disease that threaten the safety and welfare of animal or human populations.