Sandy City removes gas chamber, receives grant

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MURRAY, UT (Nov. 17, 2015) -- Check presented to Sandy City during ceremony Nov. 20


A unanimous vote was given to remove the carbon monoxide (CO) gas chamber from Sandy City Animal Services Sept. 1, 2015. The chamber was scheduled to be removed by Dec. 31 but was physically dismantled Oct. 22, 2015. The Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) Utah State Director Sundays Hunt will ceremoniously present the Sandy City Council, mayor, chief of police and shelter director with checks totaling $8,000 at 4 p.m. Nov. 20 at the shelter located at 8715 S.700 W. in Sandy, Utah. The public is invited to attend to show their support.


Euthanasia by injection (EBI) is the preferred method for animal euthanasia and is used by the majority of animal shelters across the country. There are less than three dozen shelters that still utilize a gas chamber in the U.S., seven of which are in Utah.


A $3,000 grant to purchase needed equipment to transition to EBI only was offered by the Humane Society of the United States. A matching grant of $3,000 was offered by Sandy City resident and American Dog Rescue Founder Arthur Benjamin, and an anonymous donor contributed an additional $2,000 for a total $8,000.


“We’re proud of Sandy City Animal Services for working hard to make this transition so quickly,” said Sundays Hunt. “They’ve set an example to increase humane treatment of animals in their care that we hope influences other shelters that still use a gas chamber to do the same. It is possible to make the transition and it’s the right thing to do.”


The Humane Society of Utah (HSU) and HSUS have been working together to pass legislation banning the use of CO gas chambers statewide. With the support of other animal organizations and rescues, they hope to work with the remaining seven shelters still using gas chambers in Utah to provide the training, education and support they need to voluntarily transition EBI only.


“Any objection to making the transition to EBI only is not sustained in this present day,” said Deann Shepherd, HSU representative. “Using EBI is painless, faster, less expensive and safer than using a CO gas chamber. Animal shelters and rescue organizations have the same goal – to reduce overpopulation and needless euthanasia in the first place, but when euthanasia is necessary, it should be done in the most humane method possible.”