New York Residents: Act Today to Ban Cruel, Unnecessary Devocalization Surgeries

Posted by Stephen Wells, ALDF's Executive Director on June 19, 2012

Bill number A3431D would ban devocalization, the practice of cutting vocal cords just to stifle a dog’s (or cat’s) voice. This bill to ban surgical “debarking” has passed the New York Assembly, but is now stalled in a Senate committee. Please call your Senators today to make sure the bill passes as written to ban devocalization.

To find your Senator’s name and phone number, enter your address here.

Please also call the office of Sen. Majority Leader Dean Skelos at 518-455-3171 or 516-766-8383, asking that Sen. Skelos bring the devocalization ban, A3431D, to the floor and ensure it becomes law as written.

According to The New York Times, “Critics of the debarking procedure say it is outdated and inhumane, one that destroys an animal’s central means of communication merely for the owner’s convenience. Many veterinarians refuse to do the surgery on ethical grounds.” Massachusetts passed a law banning devocalization in 2010.

Devocalization serves no medical benefit and is largely done by commercial breeders for their own convenience. Scarring as a result of devocalization surgery can block airways, causing dogs and cats to struggle to breathe, cough, gag, and even choke to death.

If A3431D doesn’t pass the Senate by June 21, it will die. If amended, it will allow and legitimize instead of prohibiting devocalization, an outrageous act of animal cruelty no matter who performs it or how.

Please contact your Senators, urging them to pass A3431D as written to ban devocalization and protect New York’s beloved animals today.


One thought on “New York Residents: Act Today to Ban Cruel, Unnecessary Devocalization Surgeries

  1. Toni Adisano says:

    June 21st. has arrived and it is Armaggedon- and not just for NY cats and dogs, but for those in the 48 states. Only Massachussets has made it a criminal offense, while Warwick RI, has done the same ( via city ordinance). While the assembly voted overwhelmingly to ban this cruel procedure ( I believe 138-2) It had been held up in the Agricultural committee, far longer than it should have been. I’ve been calling the sponsor of the bill S6761C- Senator Zeldin on a daily basis, as well as the co-sponsors. Senate Majority leader Dean Skelos, has the power to move it to the floor for a vote before the legislative session ends tonight, but has not done so. Why? My only guess is that animal welfare is not of much concern and is low on the totem pole. If this bill does not pass, it is rendered moot, and may be brought back when the legislative session resumes in January. Then the process starts all over again and while we wait once again to see if New York will set an example and perhaps be an impetus for other states to climb on board to stop this horror, our animals continue to suffer.

    You can visit the IDA site..and click on action center to find this issue and get the phone #’s for the key players. They will be in session all night and possibly tomorrow.
    The site is..In Defense of Animals. Believe me..they need defending.