The California Veterinary Medical Association’s Eight Principles of Animal Welfare, Care, and Use
As veterinary professionals, we advocate for domestic and wild animals and strive to improve their health and welfare. We endorse the following eight integrated principles founded on our education, experience, commitment to, and compassion for animals:
Animals are sentient beings who deserve humane treatment and respect from individuals and society.
Animal wellbeing must be considered when determining acceptable welfare, care, and use.
The use of and impact on animals requires the balancing of scientific knowledge, ethical principles, environmental implications, and societal values.
Animals must be provided with water, nutrition, shelter, and an environment appropriate to their welfare, care, and use, with consideration for their safety, health, and species-specific biological, behavioral, emotional, and social needs.
Animals must be cared for in ways that promote positive experiences and minimize fear, distress, pain, and suffering.
Animal caregivers and owners are responsible for preventive care, timely and appropriate veterinary care, and deliberate reproductive decisions. This responsibility must promote animal wellbeing, with consideration to genetic soundness, population management, and environmental impact.
Collaborative steps must be taken to help underserved individuals access veterinary care for their animals.