Shelter Veterinarians spay neuter clinic guidelines
This particular JAVMA-published full article is free to download!
Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association
July 01, 2008, Vol. 233, No. 1, Pages 74-86
The Association of Shelter Veterinarians veterinary medical care guidelines for spay-neuter programs
Andrea L. Looney, DVM, DACVA; Mark W. Bohling, DVM, PhD, DACVS; Philip A. Bushby, DVM, MS, DACVS; Lisa M. Howe, DVM, PhD, DACVS; Brenda Griffin, DVM, MS, DACVIM; Julie K. Levy, DVM, PhD, DACVIM; Susan M. Eddlestone, DVM, DACVIM; James R. Weedon, DVM, MPH, DACVPM; Leslie D. Appel, DVM; Y. Karla Rigdon-Brestle, DVM; Nancy J. Ferguson, DVM; David J. Sweeney, DVM; Kathy A. Tyson, DVM; Adriana H. Voors, DVM; Sara C. White, DVM; Christine L. Wilford, DVM; Kelly A. Farrell, DVM; Ellen P. Jefferson, DVM; Michael R. Moyer, VMD; Sandra P. Newbury, DVM; Melissa A. Saxton, DVM; Janet M. Scarlett, DVM, MPH, PhD
Section of Pain Medicine, College of Veterinary Medicine, Cornell University, Ithaca, NY 14853. (Looney); Department of Small Animal Clinical Sciences, College of Veterinary Medicine, University of Tennessee, Knoxville, TN 37996. (Bohling); Department of Clinical Sciences, College of Veterinary Medicine, Mississippi State University, Starkville, MS 39759. (Bushby); Department of Veterinary Small Animal Clinical Sciences, College of Veterinary Medicine and Biomedical Sciences, Texas A&M University, College Station, TX 77843. (Howe); Maddie's Shelter Medicine Program, Department of Population Medicine and Diagnostic Sciences, College of Veterinary Medicine, Cornell University, Ithaca, NY 14853. (Griffin, Scarlett); Department of Small Animal Clinical Sciences, College of Veterinary Medicine, University of Florida, Gainesville, FL 32610. (Levy); Department of Veterinary Clinical Sciences, School of Veterinary Medicine, Louisiana State University, Baton Rouge, LA 70803. (Eddlestone); Spay-Neuter Assistance Program Inc, 1001 W Loop S, Ste 110, Houston, TX 77027. (Weedon); American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, Shelter Outreach Services, 78 Dodge Rd, Ithaca, NY 14850. (Appel); National Spay/Neuter Response Team, Humane Alliance, 231 Haywood St, Asheville, NC 28801. (Rigdon-Brestle); National Spay/Neuter Response Team, Humane Alliance, S.P.O.T. Spay/Neuter Clinic, 612 S Main St, Cloverdale, IN 46120. (Ferguson); No More Homeless Pets in Utah, 324 South 400 W, Ste C, Salt Lake City, UT 84101. (Sweeney); City of San Jose Animal Care and Services, 2750 Monterey Rd, San Jose, CA 95111. (Tyson); Shenandoah Valley Spay and Neuter Clinic, 910 N Liberty St, Harrisonburg, VA 22802. (Voors); Spay ASAP Inc, 163 Clay Hill Rd, Hartland, VT 05048. (White); Cats Exclusive Veterinary Center, Feral Cat Spay/Neuter Project, 11331 Roosevelt Way NE, Seattle, WA 98125. (Wilford); Angels of Assisi, 415 Campbell Ave, Roanoke, VA 24016. (Farrell); EmanciPET Spay/Neuter Clinic, 2729 Exposition Blvd, No. 124, Austin, TX 78703. (Jefferson); Rosenthal Director of Shelter Animal Medicine, School of Veterinary Medicine, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA 19104. (Moyer); Koret Shelter Medicine Program, Center for Companion Animal Health, School of Veterinary Medicine, University of California, Davis, CA 95616. (Newbury); Humane Alliance of Western North Carolina, 231 Haywood St, Asheville, NC 28801. (Saxton)
Address correspondence to Dr. Griffin.
As efforts to reduce the overpopulation and euthanasia of unwanted and unowned dogs and cats have increased, greater attention has been focused on spay-neuter programs throughout the United States. Because of the wide range of geographic and demographic needs, a wide variety of programs have been developed to increase delivery of spay-neuter services to targeted populations of animals, including stationary and mobile clinics, MASH-style operations, shelter services, feral cat programs, and services provided through private practitioners. In an effort to ensure a consistent level of care, the Association of Shelter Veterinarians convened a task force of veterinarians to develop veterinary medical care guidelines for spay-neuter programs. The guidelines consist of recommendations for preoperative care (eg, patient transport and housing, patient selection, client communication, record keeping, and medical considerations), anesthetic management (eg, equipment, monitoring, perioperative considerations, anesthetic protocols, and emergency preparedness), surgical care (eg, operating-area environment; surgical-pack preparation; patient preparation; surgeon preparation; surgical procedures for pediatric, juvenile, and adult patients; and identification of neutered animals), and postoperative care (eg, analgesia, recovery, and release). These guidelines are based on current principles of anesthesiology, critical care medicine, microbiology, and surgical practice, as determined from published evidence and expert opinion. They represent acceptable practices that are attainable in spay-neuter programs.
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Feral Cat Blog! Notes:
The first publication from the national veterinary spay/neuter task force was
Strategies for Recruiting and Retaining Spay/Neuter Veterinarians
published by the Veterinary Task Force to Advance High Quality, High Volume Spay/Neuter in September 2007 at which time I provided a link on Neuter/Spay Assistance and Information ~ Oregon, Washington, Nationwide under Spay Neuter Reports :: Spay Neuter Studies :: Spay Neuter Research :: Spay Neuter Analysis.
See also the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) Guidelines on participating in spay/neuter clinics updated JAVMA News, June 2004:
An updated version of the Guidelines for Veterinarians Participating in Ovariohysterectomy-Orchiectomy Clinics was approved by the AVMA Executive Board in April.
As part of a regular, five-year review process, the AVMA Council on Veterinary Service recommended that the document be revised to more clearly reflect the standard of care that veterinarians should provide at spay/neuter clinics. Specifically, the updated guidelines state that the care provided at those clinics should conform to current practice standards, including the use of analgesics and the provision of postoperative care.
The revised guidelines are:
Guidelines for Veterinarians Participating in Ovariohysterectomy-Orchiectomy Clinics
Veterinarians who participate in ovariohysterectomy-orchiectomy clinics should abide by the spirit and letter of the Principles of Veterinary Medical Ethics of the American Veterinary Medical Association.
Any animal, regardless of its ownership, deserves the best efforts of the licensed veterinarian, and a quality of care equal to that provided by the private sector of the veterinary profession.
Therefore, the quality of veterinary medicine and surgery should conform to current standards of practice, including the use of analgesics and providing for post-operative care.