While no one wants to see companion animals euthanized, we are all aware that shelters across this nation engage in euthanizing not only sick, disabled, and dangerous animals, but also healthy, adoptable ones. As the last act of compassion for all these lives, we should be as gentle and caring as possible. Euthanasia by sodium pentobarbital or a derivative should be the sole means of euthanizing shelter animals. However, some states still use gas chambers to euthanize animals.
Sometimes a dozen or more animals are placed in a gas chamber. Gassing often can take 30 minutes or more during which time the animals are all terrified and some panic to the point of attacking the other animals in the chamber. This is no way to euthanize an animal who, through no fault of his or her own, became a casualty of the pet overpopulation problem in this country.
Two states, Hawaii and Texas, have legislation pending, HCR 34 and SB 360 , respectively, that would require the use of sodium pentobarbital or a derivative and prohibit the use of compression or gas chambers or other means that do not immediately euthanize the animal.
Hawaii and Texas residents, contact your legislators and urge them to support legislation that will save many animals from terrible suffering. Residents of other states where gas chambers are used, contact your legislators and urge them to support humane euthanasia at animal shelters.