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Old 09-24-2011, 10:47 AM
 
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Gassing an infant down is actually not recommended. It takes longer for it to take effect because they don't have the same oxygen distribution. I'm not using the right words here, but basically if you try and euthanize a puppy in a gas chamber as is common at some shelters, it can take longer than it would with an adult.

Cardiac injection alone is cruel and is not considered an acceptable method of euthanasia by any regulatory agency. It may be unavoidable on small animals like neonates, but they should always be sedated first.

As an aside, euthanasia is not the correct term for this. Euthanasia refers to ending a life to relieve suffering. This is ending lives for convenience and the correct term is simply killing.

If you are interested in ending the killing of healthy shelter areas and getting change on a national and local level, I highly encourage you to start researching a 'no kill nation' and how it can be accomplished.
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Old 09-24-2011, 02:49 PM
 
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Originally Posted by ParallelJJCat View Post
Gassing an infant down is actually not recommended. It takes longer for it to take effect because they don't have the same oxygen distribution. I'm not using the right words here, but basically if you try and euthanize a puppy in a gas chamber as is common at some shelters, it can take longer than it would with an adult.

Cardiac injection alone is cruel and is not considered an acceptable method of euthanasia by any regulatory agency. It may be unavoidable on small animals like neonates, but they should always be sedated first.

As an aside, euthanasia is not the correct term for this. Euthanasia refers to ending a life to relieve suffering. This is ending lives for convenience and the correct term is simply killing.

If you are interested in ending the killing of healthy shelter areas and getting change on a national and local level, I highly encourage you to start researching a 'no kill nation' and how it can be accomplished.
So does the subject title 2 shot euth refer to what your talking about? A sedation shot and a cardiac injection shot? And if so is that the currently most recommended procedure? I'm not particularly up on this stuff, hope my questions don't offend but if I get in a conversation I'd like to know.
I do know that my VET in Michigan wanted to euth my ferret with a single shot cardiac injection and it just seemed barbaric to me without sedation. I insisted, we argued, I won. So Vets apparently considered that normal practice. 2 shot sounds better than one. This was around 2002.
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Old 09-24-2011, 04:47 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Giesela View Post
So does the subject title 2 shot euth refer to what your talking about? A sedation shot and a cardiac injection shot? And if so is that the currently most recommended procedure? I'm not particularly up on this stuff, hope my questions don't offend but if I get in a conversation I'd like to know.
I do know that my VET in Michigan wanted to euth my ferret with a single shot cardiac injection and it just seemed barbaric to me without sedation. I insisted, we argued, I won. So Vets apparently considered that normal practice. 2 shot sounds better than one. This was around 2002.
For neonates or any small animal that is too small to easily inject into a vein, that are a few options that are acceptable by regulatory agencies.

For dogs and cats, they should be given the sedation shot, then the IC shot or IP shot can be given. IC goes into the heart and is much quicker, IP goes into the stomach area and can take a long period. The important part is that the animal should be sedated first. It would be the same with a ferret.

You did the right thing- some vets do use IC injection on animals that aren't sedated, but the injection is far from painless. The lining of the heart is full of nerves. I guess the vet is either impatient or figures a few seconds of pain aren't enough to worry about. But why inflict that on an animal when there are better ways?

There's also a unique issue with unborn neonates...when an animal is spayed while pregnant, it's comparable to an abortion in that the fetuses are still alive. Some hospitals will just dispose of them, but again because of the oxygen issue with neonates they can actually survive for some time. So you can either flush the entire uterus (after it has been removed from the mother) with euthanasia solution, or inject each unborn fetus with it individually and do an IC stick.

As a personal aside, my heart cat Nic was euthanized due to CRF at fourteen. His veins had collapsed due to the illness, and they had a terrible time injecting the solution. They had already gassed him down so he wasn't feeling anything, and I finally gave permission (more like begged) for them to just do an IC stick. It was over and done in seconds. The IC stick itself is not the cruel part, it's doing it on animals that aren't asleep already.

For very small animals like mice and hamsters, you still want them to be sedated, but this can be traumatic in itself because of the small size. So gassing them down just until they fall asleep can be a good option, and then giving them the final injection. Cervical dislocation is also an acceptable option, and done correctly and quickly the animal won't feel it- but even then sedation first would be the best option though.

Reptiles are a whole different issue and there really is not good way to euthanize a reptile, or sometimes even to tell if they are alive. They can hold their breaths for very long periods, so gassing them out isn't a good option. To be frank, even cervical dislocation or decapitation doesn't prevent suffering, as the brain can function for up to 30 seconds. There's also a great deal of debate about the best way to euthanize fish- freezing is NOT considered acceptable. I use clove oil, which basically puts them to sleep, but some people feel it may cause burning and there's no good way to know.

Got a bit off topic there, but any shelter or vet that is using IC sticks alone is just being cruel.
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Old 09-24-2011, 04:59 PM
 
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Its a tough conversation, thank you for the info. A couple more questions. Thinking more about it I don't actually remember the IC stick. I remember the argument. I remember the sedation shot. Is the IC stick necessary? Can they just..slow them down till the heart stops? Rereading your pose I just realized you mention two different things, is there a difference btw "euthensia solution" and sedation?
My other ferret, they opened up, no hope, they recommended and I agreed to not wake her back up. What happens then? I'm realizing I should have asked. Still tough after all these years.

Last edited by Giesela; 09-24-2011 at 05:10 PM..
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Old 09-24-2011, 08:11 PM
 
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"Euthanasia solution" is actually just an overdose of a sedation drug, typically with pentobarbital. It slows down the heart and respiratory function. It is different from the drug typically given first to sedate the animal, which may be one of several different drugs. Usually the first injection is given into the muscle, but the euthanasia solution needs to be given in a vein. These drugs work in different ways and there is also issues with the amount that would need to be given and the effect, so the second injection is needed. In a surgical case where it is decided not to wake the animal, they are still given that injection of phenobarbital. You could in theory just leave the animal on anesthesia gas and reduce the oxygen levels, but that would take longer and the body can react as the oxygen levels drop.

Euthanasiaa very tough thing to talk about, but knowing the facts and what happens can help- and also prepare you if you do get a vet who is doing things the fast way instead of the right way.
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Old 09-30-2011, 10:04 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Kittymom4 View Post
A vet does not necessarily have to be on premises to "supervise" technician - supervision can be given by "remote" meaning direction over the phone. Euthanasia is performed in small animals through an intraperitoneal procedure all the time when a vein can't be found or hit. Basically they fill the abdomen with the pentobarbital flushes through the cavity and is absorbed. It is slow and can be painful - most will give some sort of sedative first at least. Intracardiac euthanasia is common as well and is fast once the drug is administered as it does not have to circulate through the system - however the delivery is quite painful. Neonates have no distal veins to hit and it is extremely difficult to euthanize traditionally. Any intracardiac or intraperitoneal euth should be gassed first to avoid undue cruelty - but in all honesty many people just don't as they don't see that it matters. It's cruel and when you are forced to do it enough you loose your compassion. It's a sad thing that happens to the wonderful people that enter veterinary medicine - it's a sad truth.

OMG---I had a cat PTS using intra cardiac euthanasia----did they hurt her? It was many years ago, but still is painful to think about. She was very sick, her time had come, and I took her to an ER clinic. They did give her a heavy sedation first, I held her until she was quite unconscious, I thought she had already died! They took her away for the last "shot" I wasn't allowed to watch. They said they did intra cardiac because they couldn't find a vein. The only other alternative to euthanasia was to just let her die naturally, now I regret not just letting her go naturally. She was in a coma-type state, non-responsive, labored breathing, I thought I was doing the right thing......

I've had other cats PTS since then, it was a 2-shot process, but all was peaceful. The first shot was a sedation, the second was lethal drugs in a vein. But I guess with the first kitty, the cardio-injection, they didn't have any other choice..............I wanted to take her out of her pain, did I inflict pain by having her PTS?

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Old 10-01-2011, 06:47 AM
 
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Originally Posted by MaryleeII View Post
OMG---I had a cat PTS using intra cardiac euthanasia----did they hurt her? It was many years ago, but still is painful to think about. She was very sick, her time had come, and I took her to an ER clinic. They did give her a heavy sedation first, I held her until she was quite unconscious, I thought she had already died! They took her away for the last "shot" I wasn't allowed to watch. They said they did intra cardiac because they couldn't find a vein. The only other alternative to euthanasia was to just let her die naturally, now I regret not just letting her go naturally. She was in a coma-type state, non-responsive, labored breathing, I thought I was doing the right thing......

I've had other cats PTS since then, it was a 2-shot process, but all was peaceful. The first shot was a sedation, the second was lethal drugs in a vein. But I guess with the first kitty, the cardio-injection, they didn't have any other choice..............I wanted to take her out of her pain, did I inflict pain by having her PTS?

I don't have an answer to that, but it's obvious you've loved all your kitties very much and given them many good years. You made the choice many of us would have made, and you made it out of love. I'm sure she would tell you to be at peace with your choice.
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Old 10-01-2011, 09:54 AM
 
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Originally Posted by subject2change View Post
I don't have an answer to that, but it's obvious you've loved all your kitties very much and given them many good years. You made the choice many of us would have made, and you made it out of love. I'm sure she would tell you to be at peace with your choice.

Oh, dear, maybe they did hurt her..........if ever I have to PTS another cat I will have an understanding with the vet prior, discuss options, like another poster said, it happens so quick you can't quite follow it. If they can't find a vein, then just give her bact to me, I will take her home to die. I had a cat die curled up in bed with me, he was so far gone we thought he was already dead. it was a terrible storm, we couldn't go out to save our own lives. Then Buttons made one last rally, blind and 3.4. crippled, he found his way to my bed, then howled. My mother picked him up and put him in bed with me, then Mom got in on the other side, we held Buttons close all night. That morning he was gone, curled up with a big smile on his little face. Better than running him around in that horrible storm to find someone to hurry nature along.

With another cat, we discussed it with the vet, he said the sooner the better, for those reasons, he could find a vein. Mike was dying, in pain, nothing could be done for him. We gave him a heavy sedative, drove to the vet, we were last patient of the day, vet did it quickly and efficiently, Mike went to sleep with a smile. Also, the vet knew we were both unemployed at the time, he didn't even charge.

You trust the Vet will do the best, but you have to be your pet's advocate until the end
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Old 10-01-2011, 10:59 AM
 
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I'm glad for this thread because it's something I didn't know before. But again, you were trying to make the best choice for your cat, given what you knew. I would have done the same and so would many others. Try not to be too hard on yourself.
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Old 10-01-2011, 11:28 PM
 
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Originally Posted by MaryleeII View Post
Oh, dear, maybe they did hurt her..........if ever I have to PTS another cat I will have an understanding with the vet prior, discuss options, like another poster said, it happens so quick you can't quite follow it. If they can't find a vein, then just give her bact to me, I will take her home to die. I had a cat die curled up in bed with me, he was so far gone we thought he was already dead. it was a terrible storm, we couldn't go out to save our own lives. Then Buttons made one last rally, blind and 3.4. crippled, he found his way to my bed, then howled. My mother picked him up and put him in bed with me, then Mom got in on the other side, we held Buttons close all night. That morning he was gone, curled up with a big smile on his little face. Better than running him around in that horrible storm to find someone to hurry nature along.

With another cat, we discussed it with the vet, he said the sooner the better, for those reasons, he could find a vein. Mike was dying, in pain, nothing could be done for him. We gave him a heavy sedative, drove to the vet, we were last patient of the day, vet did it quickly and efficiently, Mike went to sleep with a smile. Also, the vet knew we were both unemployed at the time, he didn't even charge.

You trust the Vet will do the best, but you have to be your pet's advocate until the end
I promise you your cat was not hurt. You said they gave her a sedation shot first- that means she was unconscious and couldn't feel anything. An cardiac shot is only painful if the animal is awake.

Earlier in the thread, I told the story of my dear, dear Nic. He was in a similar shape to your girl- his veins had collapsed. He was given a shot to sedate him first, and when they couldn't find a vein I asked for them to do the cardiac shot. It wasn't for his benefit- he was sedated and wasn't feeling anything. It was for my own, so that I didn't have to watch them keep poking him. Do you think I would have allowed that if I thought for one second it would hurt him?

You did the right thing, and so did the vet. Your girl went peacefully and knowing you loved her. AN IC INJECTION IS AN ACCEPTED METHOD OF EUTHANASIA BY THE AMERICAN VETERINARY ASSOCIATION- PROVIDED THE ANIMAL IS SEDATED FIRST. Sorry for the caps, but I wanted it to be very clear that you did not hurt your cat.

There are some shelters that are euthanizing animals by the cardiac injection without sedation first- it is common in very young animals where the vein is hard to find. That is disgusting, disturbing, and completely unacceptable by an ethical standard. What you did for your girl was a gift.
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