20 Feb CVMA testifies in support of SB 20-164 to create Socially Conscious Animal Sheltering Act
CVMA supports SB 20-164 (Treatment of Dogs and Cats in Shelters and Rescues), which creates the Socially Conscious Animal Sheltering Act. Read the full text of the bill here.
The bill would amend the PACFA Act and would set minimum standards for the treatment of dogs and cats in shelters and rescues.
In 2019, the CVMA Board of Directors adopted a position statement in support of the concept of the Socially Conscious Animal Community movement. The statement acknowledged the importance of striving to create the best outcomes for all animals by treating them respectfully and alleviating suffering.
Fundamental goals of Socially Conscious Animal Communities are achieved through shelter and community commitments to:
- Ensure every unwanted or homeless pet has a safe place to go for shelter and care
- Place every healthy and safe animal
- Assess the medical and behavioral needs of homeless animals and ensure these needs are thoughtfully addressed
- Align shelter policy with the needs of the community
- Alleviate suffering and make appropriate euthanasia decisions
- Consider the health and wellness of animals for each community when transferring animals
- Enhance the human-animal bond through thoughtful placements and post-adoption support
- Foster a culture of transparency, ethical decision-making, mutual respect, continual learning, and collaboration
CVMA 2019-2020 president Dr. Stacee Santi testified on behalf of CVMA in support of the bill during a Senate Agriculture and Natural Resources Committee meeting on February 20. See the full testimony from Dr. Santi below.
The Colorado Veterinary Medical Association strongly supports SB 20-164, and we encourage the committee to vote in favor of the Treatment of Dogs and Cats in Shelters and Rescues, which creates the Colorado Socially Conscious Sheltering Act.
The Colorado Socially Conscious Sheltering Act is significant. It will help Colorado deliver the best outcomes for all shelter and rescue animals by ensuring that each animal is treated respectfully, does not suffer, and that all healthy, safe, and social animals are adopted.
Every veterinarian, upon entering into veterinary school, takes an oath to protect animal health and welfare, prevent and relieve animal suffering, and to promote public health. Every veterinarian takes this oath.
The commitments we promise – to protect animal health and welfare, to relieve suffering, and to promote public health – these commitments are very well aligned with the fundamental principles of Socially Conscious Sheltering.
In clinics across Colorado, veterinarians fulfill our oath and the principles of socially conscious animal communities when we:
- Assess the medical and behavioral needs of animals
- Provide evidence-based recommendations and professional judgement to pet owners
- Offer customized treatment plans tailored to the needs of each animal
- Share evidence-based knowledge, expertise and resources on animal behavior
- Enhance and protect the human-animal bond by providing compassionate care for animals, their owners, and the larger community
CVMA is pleased to support legislation and policy like SB20-164 that is based on evidence drawn from animal science research and the practice of veterinary medicine.
We urge the committee to vote in favor of the Colorado Socially Conscious Sheltering Act.