56) Anesthesiologists hailed the advent of curariform drugs in surgery, because their paralytic properties obviated the need for massive, and potentially dangerous, doses of anesthesia to control unwanted movement.
Not only does the Humane Society agree with the AVMA that the anesthetic-only procedure is the preferred method for animal euthanasia, but it expressly condemns the use of curariform drugs like the one used in human lethal injections.
Curariform drugs are mentioned only briefly in the AVMA guidelines, and almost always with disapproval.
Even more striking than the fact that veterinary professionals condemn the use of curariform drugs in the euthanasia process is that, as discussed in Part III, the use of such drugs in animal euthanasia is actually illegal in many states that nevertheless continue to use them in human lethal injections.
135) In Beardslee, the Ninth Circuit noted that "it is somewhat significant" that numerous states had banned the use of curariform drugs during animal euthanasia, (136) and lawyers have counted, and listed, state statutes in various pleadings on behalf of death row inmates.
As it turns out, there is some discrepancy in the various counts of states that ban the use of curariform drugs, (138) a discrepancy that most likely reflects the nuances of the various laws rather than any real disagreement about their substance.
Some states have not traditionally been counted as implicitly banning curariform drugs because their statutes or published regulations do not provide a list of specifically approved drugs.
Comments submitted by the Humane Society of the United States in Support of House Bill 559 Banning the Use of Curariform Drugs in Maryland, 1979.
The legislative history of the statutes banning the use of curariform drugs in animal euthanasia is striking, both for what it reveals, and for what it does not reveal.
173) In any event, the concerns about T-61 and other curariform drugs, reflected in New York's legislative history, are echoed in the concerns with pancuronium today.