Debarking dogs should be illegal. Period.

A Dog Barked. So Officials Wanted His Vocal Cords Removed. Ban Debarking Procedures Now!

One official in North Carolina recent gave a family a shocking ultimatum: cut the vocal cords of their beloved pet dog Leo, or face huge legal consequences. The situation escalated after county officials repeatedly singled out Leo’s family, targeting them with multiple fines for their pup’s bark. But Leo’s not alone in his exuberance. The family has multiple nearby neighbors with dogs that bark, and live in a suburb where houses stand apart from each other. His people have made it clear that they’ll entertain alternative humane options, but that this request is abusive and they won’t abide it. Leo is lucky to have such committed parents, but many other dogs are not so fortunate.

Removing a dog’s vocal cords is done through a grotesquely inhumane surgical process called “debarking” or “devocalization.” You could imagine this might be a painful and traumatic experience, and you’d be right. In many places, such as the United Kingdom, the procedure is considered so cruel, it’s even illegal. The American Veterinary Medicine Association has also come out against debarking, calling the practice “unethical” and confirming that it “negatively impacts the welfare of the dog.” Unfortunately, debarking is still allowed in many U.S. states, including North Carolina. This incident just proves how few rights pet dogs have in North Carolina — and how quickly an animal could be abused. Lawmakers in North Carolina must protect pets, now. Sign the petition to demand that lawmakers ban the inhumane practice of debarking dogs throughout the state!

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