On February 20, 2002, approximately 30,000 live chickens
were put into a wood chipper and inhumanely torn to bits. A veterinarian
working with the Exotic Newcastle Task Force gave the order to destroy
the chickens in the wood chipper, in violation of the American
Veterinary Medical Association's humane euthanasia procedures.
All the evidence compiled by the County of San Diego
Department of Animal Services points to Dr. Greg Cutler, a veterinarian
working temporarily for USDA on the outbreak. In an interview with
Officer May Kay Gagliardo, Cutler admitted he authorized killing the
chickens in the wood chipper.
He even described how the chickens would die and, when
asked if this was humane, he responded, "absolutely." When Ms. Gagliardo
asked him for his title, he responded, "Emperor of the World." Later, in
an interview in DVM magazine, Cutler expressed that his "only regret"
was speaking to the County investigators and the media.
Meanwhile, despite all of the evidence identifying
Cutler as the veterinarian who ordered this unspeakable, violent and
inhumane destruction of helpless chickens, he still sits on the American
Veterinary Medical Association Animal Welfare Committee. To date, it is
unlikely that he will be removed.
Fast forward to January, 2004. In an interview with DVM
magazine, Dr. Bruce Little, Executive Vice President of the American
Veterinary Medical Association, commented that Cutler's removal from the
Animal Welfare Committee would not be necessary because the Committee
focuses only on companion animals. Since one of the major functions of
the AWC is to review and update animal welfare policies for all animals,
including those animals produced for food, either Dr. Little does not
understand the role of the AWC or else he is attempting to protect
Cutler's position on the AWC.
The American Veterinary Medical Association does not
address the humane treatment of animals in factory "farms." Rather, they
currently support hens in batteries and sows in gestation crates. The
American Veterinary Medical Association has had many opportunities to
change their inhumane and pro-industry animal welfare policies. For
years, Dr. Holly Cheever has presented scientific evidence that forced
molting causes the needless death of many hens in egg-producing
I have twice presented information from meat inspectors
on the injuries and death of roping calves in rodeos. The Animal Welfare
Committee has never responded to our concerns. In fact, the AVMA is more
pro-actively anti-animal welfare and aggressively obstructive. At the
last AWC meeting, speakers were not even allowed to hear each other's
While the American Veterinary Medical Association
sponsors various animal welfare forums, no expert on the humane
treatment of food animals has been invited to speak at their symposia.
Instead, the AVMA supports all industrial uses of
animals. This year, the American Association of Equine Practitioners, an
AVMA supported organization, gave their annual humane award to the
Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association. While humane treatment is
occasionally mentioned in these forums, the AVMA does little or nothing
to change its policies supporting the information therein.
Dr. Cutler is not the only culprit in the inhumane
killing of 30,000 chickens. The American Veterinary Medical Association
is a willing accomplice due in part to their archaic and inhumane animal
welfare policies. The AVMA must remove Cutler from their Animal Welfare
Please call and express your opinion to Bruce Little.
His e-mail address is:
His phone number is: 1-847-925-8070
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