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Alberta veterinarians vote to ban unnecessary procedures

February 26, 2019

Alberta veterinarians have voted to ban medical procedures deemed unnecessary and that don’t improve the health of an animal, such as declawing, ear cropping and tail docking. 

The full list of procedures which could soon be outlawed also includes tail nicking, tail blocking, cosmetic dentistry, tattooing that is not for the purpose of registration and identification, tendonectomy, front dewclaw removal, body piercing and devocalization.

On Sunday, the Alberta Veterinary Medical Association voted in favour of the resolution.

Members also passed a resolution which obligates veterinarians and veterinary technologists to report cases of animal abuse and neglect, and to take action to address animals in distress.

According to Dr. Darrell Dalton, the regulatory body’s registrar, the decision follows a “worldwide trend” which “recognizes that animal welfare is important and doing unnecessary procedures on animals is not valid.”

He said procedures like ear cropping, or ear trimming, still exist because of false assumptions which aren’t rooted in scientific fact.