Euthanasia methods?

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tagalong
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Re: Euthanasia methods?

Post by tagalong » Wed Mar 03, 2010 3:17 pm

Rapalje wrote: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.
the trick is that it isn't pushed up tight to the nose -none of my rats euthanased this way has panicked or become stressed in fact on one horrid occasion I had two done together and they fell asleep cuddled up together

out of all injection sites abdominal is least painful
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Re: Euthanasia methods?

Post by tabirat » Wed Mar 03, 2010 7:24 pm

tagalong wrote: the trick is that it isn't pushed up tight to the nose -none of my rats euthanased this way has panicked or become stressed in fact on one horrid occasion I had two done together and they fell asleep cuddled up together.
Yeah, that's how I understood it - but in fairness I have never seen it done - just I knew someone a few years ago who used that vet and that method and found it very calm.
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Re: Euthanasia methods?

Post by Lillyland » Wed Mar 03, 2010 9:39 pm

I agree with Alison - out of all the PTS i've witnessed (admittedly, that isn't THAT many), intraperitoneal injection was in my opinion, the least distressing - both to me, and the rat. The most distressing was an injected sedative and then injection - he fought for so long, struggling about like a drunk before he 'passed out', and then still screamed when the needle went in.
My current vet does gas and then injection, as she's not confident in her ability to do the intraperitoneal injection without causing distress, which is fair enough, and i'm happy with the way she handles it. But if i were back in Newcastle - i would still use the same vet that did the intraperitoneal one, as that was by far the quickest and least horrible to witness.

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Re: Euthanasia methods?

Post by Kuroku » Thu Mar 04, 2010 11:58 pm

tabirat wrote: 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.
This is how my vets have done it with my poor lads and I have never had a problem with it. Both Jay and Silent Bob never fought or struggled getting the injection done and they just wandered around on the table having a sniff about after the injection was adminstered, then they fell asleep and passed away peacefully.

Ash didn't cooperate, although he never did cooperate for the vets regardless of whether a needle was involved or not. He only got half the dose, but even that was enough to send him on his way.
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Re: Euthanasia methods?

Post by kat1234 » Fri Mar 05, 2010 2:00 pm

I think it depends on the rat and what you think he/she would find most distressing. The vet said to me that in his experience its nicer for the rat to have a quick injection in the tummy and then pass away in your arms as they can often panic when put in a box and given gas.
Having said that the girl I had pts wasn't that keen on being handled so the vet had one go at injecting into her tummy and she made the most horrendous noise I've ever heard. I told him that was enough, she needs gas first and he was more than happy to change the plan.
The other girl that I had pts was at a different vets and she was given gas and then injected. She adored cuddles so in hindsight I might have preferred for her to just have the injection and then pass away in my arms. Either way i know she didn't suffer at all and thats whats most important.
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Re: Euthanasia methods?

Post by petrify » Fri Mar 05, 2010 2:03 pm

My vet yesterday said he was happier to gas then inject in the abdomen as he had read an article that said that the injection can cause some significant discomfort to the animal before it passes. However, before he had read that, he was happier to inject them rather than gas them as alot of small animals get stressed over being put in a box and gassed. Mind you, Tom had had it so many times that he settled in the box straight away and fell asleep happily. :hearts:
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Re: Euthanasia methods?

Post by malude » Wed Jul 27, 2011 7:47 am

I'm bumping this thread back up as Amzy and I have recently been discussing this via PM having both had several rats pts in recent weeks/months in different ways and we've been trying to decide which methods we feel most comfortable with. I remembered that there had previously been a thread on the subject and it makes for very interesting reading.
I've seen 3 different pts methods and I'm really unsure which was 'best'. Actually, that's a bit misleading...I've seen 3 anaesthetic methods, all followed by an injection into the heart for the actual euthanasia.

1st - rat was put into a medium tub/container with a pad soaked in what I assume was ether/chloroform. She went to sleep very quickly but did get stressed being put into the tub.
2nd - injected anaesthetic - it was a locum vet and the only way she'd let me stay with him was without a gas anaesthetic. I agreed to the injected one as he was basically unconscious already when we'd rushed him to the on call vet. He barely flinched at the anaesthetic needle, but of course a fully awake rat would have felt it more.
3rd - rat put into a tiny chamber (basically a large dog mask) to be gassed. Again, he fell asleep quickly but was definitely stressed by being squeezed into a tiny space.

I know Amzy has seen at least 2, I'll leave it for her to post her experiences.

I was wondering whether a small pawprint type carrier could be 'modded' into a gas chamber. So they could be put into a small and familiar carrier with a familiar hammock in it which would stress them less and then if all the holes were sealed apart from one where you could feed the gas tube in hopefully in a small space like that they'd fall asleep quickly.

I'd like to hear people's thoughts and experiences as until I was actually allowed to stay with rats I'd always had a bit of a rose tinted view of it - thinking the anaesthetic was quick and stress-free but now I know that's not really the case I'd like to find a way of making it as stress-free as possible.
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Re: Euthanasia methods?

Post by tagalong » Wed Jul 27, 2011 9:29 am

The way to make the Chloroform pad least stressful is that it is put into the carrier you already have the rat in -it does not have to be sealed and the trick is time and a patient vet -gently moving the pad nearer once they get drowsy -I worked for my old vets we did not use this method and tbh I wish we had done so -we used a 'gas' chamber basically a plastic biscuit box which we put the rat's bedding in etc to make it more relaxed -the thing is it is very very difficult to put a mask directly on a rat's face and the instant it slips it will regain consciousness .
Direct kidney/heart injections without sedation should only ever be used when it is in the best interest of the animal as done correctly it will be by far the quickest method.
t
This is not a pleasant subject to discuss but it is a very important one -a lot of people see vet procedures as 'shrouded in secret'
they should not be -ask the nurse or speak to the vet prior to the time you need this done -each vet has their preferred method and their own skills -a good skilled vet can PTS quickly and with minimum stress to patient and owner.
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Re: Euthanasia methods?

Post by Alijane » Wed Jul 27, 2011 10:26 am

I have taken mine to the vet in their carrier, but in one of their padded cubes in the carrier. The vet has then lifted the rat - in her padded cube (and sometimes curled up in there) - into the gas tank - and anaesthetised her. Once the rat is asleep, the vet has done the injection. Because the rat is in her bed and stays in her bed all the way through the procedure, my puttings to sleep have always been very peaceful. It can take a little bit longer in the gas tank for the rat, because the gas has to get right into the padded cube, but we felt that was worthwhile. Because they have been in their bed, they haven't panicked.

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Re: Euthanasia methods?

Post by Amzy » Wed Jul 27, 2011 11:22 am

For clarity myself and Jude used to use the same vets so the PTS's we've experienced were at the same practice. The two methods I saw were the same, but handled differently by each vet.

1st - the rat was put into a fairly large 'gas chamber' and she continued to gasp for air. It took a while for her to fall asleep due to the size of the tub she was in - this is what I found most distressing. They took her out and put the gas mask on her face, and injected into her heart. The vet missed her heart the first time (which I also found distressing) however found her heart the second time.

2nd - I had two rats needing to be PTS. They were both put in a smaller gas chamber together... and they both calmly fell asleep together. They were less distressed because they had each other. The vet was competant at injectiong them, and she was quick at doing so. She was alot more competant at it, and I felt a bit better having her do it.

Its only recently I've made it clear to the vets that I want to be present during a PTS - and I've had some stern words also :oops: . There has only been 1 which has been taken from me to be PTS, about 6 months ago. I much prefered my second PTS but I think that was merely because they were less distressed being together.
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Re: Euthanasia methods?

Post by Jird » Wed Jul 27, 2011 11:42 am

malude wrote:I was wondering whether a small pawprint type carrier could be 'modded' into a gas chamber. So they could be put into a small and familiar carrier with a familiar hammock in it which would stress them less and then if all the holes were sealed apart from one where you could feed the gas tube in hopefully in a small space like that they'd fall asleep quickly.
When I had Blaze and George PTS I took them to the vets in their Aladino carrier, which is always fully lined with loads of fleece scraps and substrate. Nick (my vet) popped the carrier into a large plastic tub, and infused the whole thing with sevoflurane gas. After a few minutes he took them out, put them onto a mask to maintain the anaesthesia, and injected into the heart after checking their reflexes. It was a very peaceful passing for them.

With the anaesthesia it wasn't quite using the carrier as a chamber, but using a large enough chamber to accommodate the entire carrier rather than just the rat so they could remain in familiar surroundings. They probably took longer to lose consciousness in the large tub than if gas was just directly infused into the carrier alone, but as they had each other and the sevoflurane apparently has little odour it didn't appear to be stressful for them.
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Re: Euthanasia methods?

Post by malude » Wed Jul 27, 2011 12:34 pm

I think I'll definitely ask to have the rat kept in their own carrier and bedding next time as it seems this makes a huge difference.
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Re: Euthanasia methods?

Post by acapae_wolf » Wed Jul 27, 2011 12:42 pm

Oooh, that's a good plan about the bigger box and aladino inside! I usually take a blanket from free range (stinky) or give them a jumper of mine in the box, but that's a much better idea :)
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Re: Euthanasia methods?

Post by !anna! » Wed Jul 27, 2011 1:50 pm

I've only had two pts, one was just allowed to pass away while already under anesthesia for an operation, and the other used a gas chamber. I was not allowed in the room because of the gas which I was very unhappy about. I could see through a small window however, and he didn't panic from the gas. He was put in what looked like a medium sized tupperware box, although at the time he really was fairly out of it already, so it might not've been a usual reaction to the gas.
I don't know whether he was further injected afterwards...

Have people ever been able to sway their vet when they say the won't allow you with them when they use gas?
I really want the chloroform method as it sounds by far the most peaceful, but I find it hard to discuss things with my vet :-|
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Re: Euthanasia methods?

Post by Amzy » Wed Jul 27, 2011 3:56 pm

Jird wrote:
malude wrote:I was wondering whether a small pawprint type carrier could be 'modded' into a gas chamber. So they could be put into a small and familiar carrier with a familiar hammock in it which would stress them less and then if all the holes were sealed apart from one where you could feed the gas tube in hopefully in a small space like that they'd fall asleep quickly.
When I had Blaze and George PTS I took them to the vets in their Aladino carrier, which is always fully lined with loads of fleece scraps and substrate. Nick (my vet) popped the carrier into a large plastic tub, and infused the whole thing with sevoflurane gas. After a few minutes he took them out, put them onto a mask to maintain the anaesthesia, and injected into the heart after checking their reflexes. It was a very peaceful passing for them.

With the anaesthesia it wasn't quite using the carrier as a chamber, but using a large enough chamber to accommodate the entire carrier rather than just the rat so they could remain in familiar surroundings. They probably took longer to lose consciousness in the large tub than if gas was just directly infused into the carrier alone, but as they had each other and the sevoflurane apparently has little odour it didn't appear to be stressful for them.
Did Nick let you out the back? I always got the impression he wouldn't let me 'cos he tries to take my rats out the back when giving injections! xx

edit: that was meant to be a PM :oops:
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