Way O.T. How to Humanely Euthanize a Cat
Not really a machinist question, more so looking for personal advice. We have a 16 year old cat who is getting close to her last days. Being a hunter and having many weapons at my house, I realize I could just shoot it in the head and be done with it, however this is my daughters cat and she sort of wants to be part of this, and having the last thing she remembers about her cat is the bullet in the head might not be the very best thing. Does anyone know of some home made formula or remedy for this..? I cannot see spending 150$ to take this thing to the vet to have it put down. I could let my German Shepheards at it but that would be more for entertainment purposes rather than a humane euthanization.
Do you have CO2 or Argon welding gasses? A car exhaust will work just as well but may be to hot for truly painless euthanization.
Euthanization of animals can be as simple as a cardboard box lined with plastic. The animal could be made as comfortable as desired. A lid is placed over the box and CO2 is piped into the box. I don't know how long, but not very. Longer than necessary is much better than not long enough.
SWMBO wouldn't allow me to put our dog down. The $35. to the vet wasn't as bad as bringing her remains home, but there was no way I was going to allow her to be buried anywhere else.
I don't know your local laws but don't think you should have your daughter discuss the affair with her friends after the event is over.
My brother had his dog put down at home by the vet. He came by on his way home, injected the dog, and left. It was significantly cheaper than having a vet do it on site at his vet hospital.
Not nec what you asked for, just another option you can consider.
there was a stink recently when a local farmer put down a large number of dogs by gassing them with exhaust. I am not sure, but maybe he got charged with something. I only really read the headlines, sounded like an Amish puppy mill.
I had 4 cats about 10 years ago that had to be put down over a years time, I got tired of that, but I think it was 35 bucks a pop.
Old job used to do this too mice. had a tank like a pressure cooker with a clear plastic lid. We used Nitrogen or any gas but CO2. the body would react to a rising co2 level but O2 levels there is no reaction. They just keep breathing peacefully until they died.
make sure there is a small vent in the chamber you do not want to pressureize it and rupture the chamber or implode the animal.
If the daughter is watching do not use ether.
co2 hurts. higher co2 us what makes your body think it's suffocating by giving you that burning feeling.
argon would not.
Or, you take the cat out somewhere nice in the woods and tell your daughter that the cat will get to run free for her last days and nature will do what nature does, and nobody needs to watch it die.
I used to do what with any sick rabbit(farm meat rabbits), let it loose and they either found what to eat to cure themselves, or something got them.
Plus 3 on don't use CO2
The body has excellent defences against elevated CO2, it gives great discomfort and a feeling of absolute panic and terror (I go caving, and I've been in areas with elevated CO2, it is not good, try holding your breath for as long as you can, it is the rising CO2 in your blood that causes the discomfort and urge to breath).
As Bill D says, the body has no defence against depleted O2, so a nitrogen or inert gas atmosphere will result in lost conciousness and death. Actual death takes several minutes after breathing ceases, if you introduce oxygen before that, the poor thing will probably gasp and begin breathing again.
I know labs and some slaughter plants use CO2, this is a hang over from the days of having coal gas containing CO available, it is also based on DesCarte's mistaken theory, that as animals can't speak, they can't feel pain (surgeons use the same crap to justify surgery on newborn babies without wasting their money on pain relief).
(Edit: this side of the Atlantic vets receive NO TRAINING IN ANIMAL WELFARE, and many are actually taught that "animals do not feel pain", a few might actually believe it)
Using engine exhaust gas may have worked well in the days of carburettors and chokes on gasoline engines, but there isn't much CO in today's car exhaust fumes.
There are other ways of getting CO, which I'll share through PM, but not in open forum - I know a couple of people who wouldn't be here today if they'd known when they were suffering depression - They both tried with car exhaust, and both said that the next ten days it felt like they'd gone 10 rounds in the ring with Mike Tyson.
We're taking one to the vet tonight for euthanazia - FIP has just got him and he's declined to the obvious point.
Now, I could easily do the job in a number of ways, but there is NO WAY I WOULD DO IT, and I suggest you consider this:
Taking the cat to the vet has basically nothing to do with the cat, and EVERYTHING to do with your daughter. In my opinion, the cost of the vet is a cheap price to demonstrate how much you care about her and her feelings. Letting her make the decision and telling her that she's worth it shows ultimate respect for her, and any other choice she may "agree to" could backfire in the future, as memories fade and change. That kind of pain can last two lifetimes - hers and yours.
We're in our 60s, and by now we've had and lost a lot of cats. My wife makes all the decisions about them, understands them, and cares for them in ways that make me wonder if I sometimes waste my time caring so much for mechanical devices.
I would never show her the lack of respect and caring that could occur if I took over the end-of-life time for one of those critters. . .
Last edited by Frank Ford; 09-24-2010 at 09:44 AM.
Pain and suffering are two very different things.
I used to do laundry outside in Winter..my hands and feet were cold, but my attitude was, "so what?". When ex-wife did it, she suffered (that's why I did it, when weather was bad).
Suffering is my decision to feel sorry for myself; pain is merely a signal to pay attention.
Animals are much less inclined to suffer than we are. I still grieve to remember once when I was at the vet's to get shots for one of mine, somebody brought in a very creaky old dog. Yes, I could see that the dog was a bit incontinent, and smelled. Yes, she had a lot of arthritis, and moved very carefully and not without pain. But that dog was still enjoying life, glad to be out with owner, interested in all the sights and smells.
It was the damned owner that could not take it. Vet killed the dog with an injection, I do not know what it was, but I saw the dog SUFFER a second or two of pure panic when that drug, administered IV, hit whatever its target organ was.
I had a not-very -old dog with bone cancer, limped happily for a while until the thing started to hurt or itch, then she nibbled it open and it got infected, and I saw in that dog's face, "What IS this thing, it hurts, I'm scared!"
I had a very old dog with congestive heart failure, feet swelled, and eventually bad circulation led to gangrene and pain.
So not only does the vet cost money, but I am not so sure it is non-traumatic for the animal, even if the mere visit to the vet is non-traumatic.
The cat may be old and creaky, but how certain are you that s/he is suffering, that to the cat, life is no longer worth living?
I have no knowledge of the subjective experience of suffocation by low O2. I know being put into a plastic-lined box would freak me out, and I think animals are often VERY aware of what is being planned for them.
I do know, as much as such a thing can be knowable, from slaughtering lots of pigs and cows for food, and those two dogs for mercy, that a .22 through the brain is perfectly instantaneous. Only take care, because the bullet may exit a small animal, and the brain is a smaller target than it appears to be.
Your daughter may be old enough to appreciate the arguments,and overcome the merely apparent crudity of the ballistic solution.
Mark me down emphatically for Mr Ford's approach. This event will not be forgotten no matter how you deal with it. Have the vet do it. Take your daughter with you. The money will be well spent. WWQ
I suspect the cat just needs a vet, when was the last time you took the cat to the vet?
We let our children have a puppy or a kitten when both the child and the animal are young.they grow up together and form bonds sometimes more so than just humans.Then when the cat or dog gets to it's last walk in life we hunt ways to make easy on ourselves when that time comes.Do the right thing.Is'nt it worth a lousy $150 bucks to make this transition for your daughter an easy one?Sure there be will be other animals in her life but if this is her first one it's all the more important
cat came back
I've got a different cat problem. We have a barn cat that we can pet and it purrs a bit (just enough to get fed every day twice a day). Apart from that we don't see it.
But... now there is a black cat that moved in the barn and already tried to take out the first cat's eye and half his front cheek in a fight.
So I caught the black cat in a Racoon trap (easy, took about 90 minutes with cat food leading into the trap and a cup of food at the back).
WHile the cat was in the cage I tried to see if there was any chance it was friendly, NONE!
So I bring it out to the woods and release it close to the Mississippi river (about 4-5 miles from home). This was 4 days ago.
Yesterday, I'm working in the barn and what do I see, the black cat running out of the barn (got scared from my noise making) and headed into the tall drying corn stalks for cover.
So now what?? I'll try the racoon trap again but I don't think it's that stupid to get caught in the same trap twice.
If it was a racoon or possum shooting it would be a no brainer and hauling it to the river bank a small appreciated meal for the other hungry animals living there. But it's a cat! And cats in our society have a different label and if I shoot it I feel others will label me a animal cruelty.
But the animal shelter is full and not accepting cats or dogs (that's why I left it by the river the first time I caught it in the cage).
All I can think about since yesterday when I saw that black cat again is the cartoon I say as a kid "the cat came back the very next day..." and the rest of the song I can't remember...
I personally detest cats, but I do not believe in animal cruelty of any sort. I do like dogs though, and I can identify with someone like your daughter who is attached to a pet. The only pet I ever loved was a dog I had as a kid, and if it had been simply shot by my father, I would have never forgotten it.
Maybe the help can come from a friend. I mean sort of like a mafia hit that comes from "the outside" and is done humanely by one of the methods given above. Biggest thing is to keep your child happy and not seeing you in a bad light.
You guys in Canada never will have a sense of humor will ya.
Originally Posted by hickstick_10
I agree a .22 may be the most humane and painless way to euthanise a small animal but the death dance after the brain has been destroyed may not be painless for the uninformed observer.
Gassing an amimal no matter what gas you use is just plain cruel. the body knows that it is not getting oxygen, and the panic pain and terror will last for several minutes before death. I will say that the 150.00 that your vet wants for euthaniasia is very steep. Shop around, and find one that is a little more reasonable with their prices. Another option would be your local animal shelter. i had one put down at the humane society several years ago for around 50.00. Don't take the cheap route here. Your cat has given your daughter many years of enjoyment. It deserves to have a peaceful end.