Euthanasia methods?

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Stace87
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Euthanasia methods?

Post by Stace87 » Wed Mar 03, 2010 9:43 am

What method/s of euthanasia do you prefer and why? I'm gathering some peoples views and have emailed some vets to discover their methods, should the time come for a pts.

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tagalong
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Re: Euthanasia methods?

Post by tagalong » Wed Mar 03, 2010 10:12 am

well sadly having witnessed very many PTS of all species (the down side to working with your vet) and my own pets -with the rats the way my vet does it now i really feel is the kindest and by far least stressful for rat and owner.
If your rat is in a carry basket he simply gets a ball of cottonwool and some chloroform and hold it near to the nose (not forced on ) so very gradually the rat will fall asleep once sound asleep he will give the injection -the rat knows nothing about the needle -no squeaking in pain or panicking ..
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Re: Euthanasia methods?

Post by Inner Chorus » Wed Mar 03, 2010 10:17 am

Gas then injection into the heart. I wouldn't have it done without the rat being anaesthetised first. The two times I've had rats PTS the vet has allowed me to stay with them the whole time; I held them while they inhaled the gas and was there when they were injected. Both times it was very peaceful and I'm certain they felt no pain.
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tagalong
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Re: Euthanasia methods?

Post by tagalong » Wed Mar 03, 2010 10:28 am

Inner Chorus wrote:Gas then injection into the heart. I wouldn't have it done without the rat being anaesthetised first. The two times I've had rats PTS the vet has allowed me to stay with them the whole time; I held them while they inhaled the gas and was there when they were injected. Both times it was very peaceful and I'm certain they felt no pain.
gas is obviously widely used -my only reason for preferring Chloroform with the small furries is that to gas you need a chamber /mask or sealed box which often distresses them and if they have breathing problems it can be very stressful to rat and owner.Where I worked we used a plastic biscuit box but it was heartbreaking to see them struggle to get out
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Re: Euthanasia methods?

Post by carney » Wed Mar 03, 2010 10:38 am

tagalong wrote:well sadly having witnessed very many PTS of all species (the down side to working with your vet) and my own pets -with the rats the way my vet does it now i really feel is the kindest and by far least stressful for rat and owner.
If your rat is in a carry basket he simply gets a ball of cottonwool and some chloroform and hold it near to the nose (not forced on ) so very gradually the rat will fall asleep once sound asleep he will give the injection -the rat knows nothing about the needle -no squeaking in pain or panicking ..
I didn't realise that this was a method that could be used - I might have to speak to my vet about this next time the dreaded pts time comes around.
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Re: Euthanasia methods?

Post by tagalong » Wed Mar 03, 2010 10:44 am

It's a very old fashioned method really -the vet i have is great he believes in diagnose /treat -works then great -doesn't work then tests etc need to be done A lot of vets now do the tests first which can delay treatment but also involve unnecessary stress and a lot more cash :)
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Re: Euthanasia methods?

Post by longlegs » Wed Mar 03, 2010 11:12 am

The methods I've witnessed are:
Injection straight into the heart - before we knew better and the vet insisted it was the kindest. Put it this way, I wanted to do very painful things to that vet and we quickly found a new surgery so we never saw him again. It was about nine years ago and that squeal and the guilt still haunts me :cry: Never again.

Injection into the kidneys - only remember seeing this when I was about 3, and don't remember what it was like, but knowing what I know now I wouldn't have that done again

Gas then injection (into heart or kidneys, whatever the vet's preference) - this is how the vast majority of my PTSs have been done, and the preferred method of my surgery for all small furries (the main reason we started going there). They're passionate about making every PTS as dignified and kind as possible. Although they can panic a little, I still believe it to be kinder than the injection.

Sedative injection (under the skin) then final injection as above - we asked for this when we dealt with a locum who wouldn't let us be around the gas (insurance wise they're not covered, although the partners always let us). We now ask for this method, as it's definitely the most peaceful we've found. Even another locum, who seemed unsure of this, admitted afterwards it was a very peaceful way to go (and that it's a shame we can't choose to go that way ourselves! Quite telling, I thought). The injection does tend to sting a bit but there's long enough afterwards for that not to be the final memory, as it takes a while to kick in. One rat started jumping a couple of times but settled within seconds, it was nothing like what I've seen with gas.

I've heard some people say that an injection into the kidneys, if done by a skilled enough vet, isn't painful as they can go through the gap in the muscle wall. I don't know about that, but I personally wouldn't want to risk it. I think it says a lot that, from my experience and what I've heard, a lot of surgeries now always use sedation before the final injection. You can check they're fully asleep by testing the blink reflex, if you touch the corner of their eye and they don't blink, they're under. My mum often squeezes a paw or ear as well, just to check for a pain response.

Sorry for the rather long post :oops: Hope it helps in some way :)
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Re: Euthanasia methods?

Post by tagalong » Wed Mar 03, 2010 11:18 am

injection into abdomen ,heart or kidneys should only be done when the animal is in extreme pain and it is in their benefit to act quickly.
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Re: Euthanasia methods?

Post by longlegs » Wed Mar 03, 2010 11:33 am

tagalong wrote:injection into abdomen ,heart or kidneys should only be done when the animal is in extreme pain and it is in their benefit to act quickly.
Thanks for clarifying that. As I said, it's certainly not a method I'd ever choose for my animals, and still feel guilty for the times we knew no better :cry: The injection into the heart (lungs, actually, as he missed :( ) was, hands down, the cruelest thing I've seen done to an animal right in front of me :cry: We did question it before it happened, but I wish we had done more. Every vet this has been mentioned to since has been completely appalled :angry:
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Re: Euthanasia methods?

Post by Feliss » Wed Mar 03, 2010 12:09 pm

longlegs wrote:The methods I've witnessed are:
Injection straight into the heart - before we knew better and the vet insisted it was the kindest. Put it this way, I wanted to do very painful things to that vet and we quickly found a new surgery so we never saw him again. It was about nine years ago and that squeal and the guilt still haunts me :cry: Never again.
Hrm i know that too. Terrible thing. Never again.
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Re: Euthanasia methods?

Post by Othere » Wed Mar 03, 2010 12:36 pm

longlegs wrote:The injection into the heart (lungs, actually, as he missed :( ) was, hands down, the cruelest thing I've seen done to an animal right in front of me :cry:
Seconded. My last vet did this as he assured me it wasn't painful. The reaction said otherwise and I no longer use them. I feel sick to my stomach whenever I think about it. The chloroform is interesting though and if we are not allowed to be with our next one when they use gas I may request that instead :( It is much more comforting to have them in your arms I think, for both them and us.
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Re: Euthanasia methods?

Post by Jillybean » Wed Mar 03, 2010 1:38 pm

I`ve been there in the `horror` category too but I am very interested in the chloroform way....I like that idea and will speak to my vet about it .

Thank you very much for this :D
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Re: Euthanasia methods?

Post by Jillybean » Wed Mar 03, 2010 1:53 pm

Tagalong....Can I just ask..Would this method be okay for guinea pigs too ?

Thank you :hearts:
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Re: Euthanasia methods?

Post by tabirat » Wed Mar 03, 2010 2:51 pm

tagalong wrote:injection into abdomen ,heart or kidneys should only be done when the animal is in extreme pain and it is in their benefit to act quickly.
I wouldn't ever agree to injection into the heart on a concious animal.
The kidneys I have never heard of before seeing this thread.
The abdomen - if you mean intraperitoneal injection - is a reasonable injection site and can also be used to give warmed fluids to very dehydrated rats (and is in my experience less painful that subcutaneous injection of fluids). As a method of euthanasia I have held scores of rats for I think 4 different vets (in Newcastle and Lincoln) to use intraperitoneal injection without sedation and have never seen one in distress. The worst I have witnessed is a single mild protest eep such as might be given during a scruff injection. But most of the rats haven't protested or struggled at the point of injection, which I can only assume means it doesn't have to be a distressing procedure for them.

I would be the first to say that I think there are other equally valid methods of pts, and that peritoneal injection by an unskilled practitioner could be awful (ie if done badly), but it would be wrong to suggest that gas is necessarily less distressing for a rat, particularly one with breathing problems. A scruff injection seems painless to some rats and not to others, so giving an injected sedative first may help but can end up being no better than just the single injection in terms of degrees of distress.

I know of one other vet who used the chloroform trick (in Sunderland) but I don't think they are still practicing - and I would say it is (in my mind) the most humane of all as there is no injection in a concious animal and the cholorform doesn't seem to cause any panic or distress as gas can for some rats. I wonder why it's not more widely used? Will ask my vet next time I see her.
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Re: Euthanasia methods?

Post by Rapalje » Wed Mar 03, 2010 3:08 pm

I don't think chloroform is that humane. It has a very strong smell that irritates the nose and airways and it is very possible that rats do panic...
I must say that the chloroform euthanasia I know about was using only chloroform, and that way it takes much too long anyway.

But I prefer one or two injections in the abdomen, by an experienced vet.
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