How do you put down a bird?


9 Years
Apr 12, 2010
Harpers Ferry, WV
I am trying to decide whether to treat my bird with water belly or put her down. It looks really painful. This is the second time that she has gotten this in the two months that I have owned her. She has never laid me an egg.

It went away on its own the first time because I didn't know what it was. Now it seems clear that she is internally laying and her abdomen is HUGE. She can barely walk.

I haven't had to put down an adult bird yet. What is the most humane way to do it? I am a vegetarian so I won't be eating her.
Lots of good ways, it all depends on what you're able to do and comfortable doing. Ending suffering, especially a protracted suffering of internal bloating and slow, painful death is indeed humane.

When a bird is so sick and there's very little movement, and needs being dispatched, it is pretty easy to put the barrel of a small caliber gun at the head. The sharp hatchet is extremely effective and quick on the chopping block, as is a sharp knife. Each method requires determination and purposeful finality. I'm very, very sorry for your loss. I had to put down a hen last week for this same reason. She had suffered enough, in spite of all my futile efforts, it had to be done.
I use the broomstick method. No blood and everyone's got a broom or wooden stick around. There's a youtube on it somewhere, but you just gently lay the bird on the ground, place a stick over the neck, stand on either side of the stick and pull feet up. Takes less than a second and it's done. I still hate doing it tho. =( (also a vegetarian and don't eat my birds).

Here's the youtube:

(warning shows humane killing of a chicken and may require you to sign into youtube).
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I like featherz's method for dispatch. It's the one I always recommend for laymen. No blood involved, requires only one person to achieve, very quick, and no additional tools necessary.

Good luck. And I am sorry it has come to this, but you are doing the right thing.

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