OVMA Principles of Animal Care & Use

As veterinarians, we endorse the following principles founded on our education, experience, commitment to and compassion for animals:

  1. Human beings have an obligation and responsibility to treat animals humanely.
  2. Animal’s interests should be given thoughtful consideration by individuals and society when determining acceptable care and use. This requires the balancing of scientific knowledge and ethical, philosophical, and moral values.
  3. Animals should be provided with water, nutrition, and an environment appropriate to their care and use, with consideration for their safety, health and species-specific biological needs and behavioral natures.
  4. Animals should be cared for in ways that minimize fear, pain, suffering and distress.
  5. The use of an animal should be balanced by the greater benefits to other animals, humans or society.
  6. Animals should be used purposefully, whether for food and fiber, recreation, companionship, transportation, work, education, or the advancement of scientific knowledge.
  7. It is an owner’s responsibility to provide animals with timely and appropriate preventive, medical, dental and surgical care, and an effort should be made to ensure that animals are reproduced in a responsible manner.
  8. Animals should be provided a humane death.