Thanks to calls from caring people, the Maryland State Legislature recently passed House Bill 667, prohibiting devocalization--the cutting of vocal cords to stifle a dog's or cat's voice.
It exposes dogs and cats to life-threatening risks--regardless of the vet's skill or the approach used--without any benefit to the animal, not even the claimed "secure home." Massachusetts was the first to outlaw this cruelty. Maryland should too.
WHAT YOU MUST DO RIGHT NOW TO PROTECT ANIMALS
Powerful special interests that profit from devocalization are aggressively lobbying Maryland's governor to veto House Bill 667. Fight back to protect animals!
Urge Gov. O'Malley to sign House Bill 667. If it doesn't become law, innocent dogs and cats will continue to have their vocal cords cut for the "crime" of communicating.
►Calls are best--and fast! (410) 974-3901 weekdays 8:30 am to 5:00 pm Politely ask that the Governor "sign House Bill 667, banning devocalization of dogs and cats, without delay."
►If you get voice mail: Leave this message and your name, "Please sign House Bill 667, banning devocalization." Then call back later to talk with a person if you can. Voicemails can be accidentally deleted!
IT EXPOSES THEM TO LIFE-THREATENING RISKS: Cutting even a little vocal cord tissue, the ONLY way to alter the voice, poses serious, potentially fatal risks no matter how skilled the vet or how the procedure is performed. Persistent coughing, gagging, fainting; inhalation of food and liquids into the lungs; and death by choking--a terrifying way to die--are among the horrific outcomes of this needless surgery.
THERE IS NO BENEFIT FOR ANIMALS, not even the claimed "secure home." Devocalized dogs and cats are surrendered and convenience-euthanized like any other. What really keeps animals out of shelters? People who care for, train and supervise them responsibly--and who make a lifetime commitment to them.
IT DISCOURAGES RESPONSIBLE STEWARDSHIP OF ANIMALS, necessary to manage all behavior. Devocalization is easier for the owner, profitable for the vet. Only the animal suffers.
IT PUTS PEOPLE AT RISK TOO by removing vocal nuances that animals use to communicate different meanings. Few people can read a dog's or cat's body language, especially when the animal is not their own. Imagine a child running up to pet a devocalized dog in the park--not aware that his wagging tail is a sign of agitation and his muffled, strange sounds mean "get away or I'll bite."