How to euthanize - have a newly-hatched Coturnix chick with problems

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by optio100, Apr 23, 2019.

  1. optio100

    optio100 In the Brooder

    Apr 7, 2019
    This is a difficult topic, but I never see people discuss it. My last hatched quail chick is twisted in a way that it's not going to get up and survive. What should I do with it? Of course it's already being picked on. How do you put it down? I don't want it to suffer needlessly.

    I also would like to know what you all do with remains of deceased animals, and how you put them down, generally. I know it's awful, but I see people write about losses all the time, so there have to be methods? I'm trying to be adult about this, in a face your fears kind of way. Thanks.
    The Phantom likes this.
  2. micstrachan

    micstrachan Free Ranging

    So sorry. I believe several people here do cervical dislocation (breaking neck.) In particular, the broomstick method. Maybe a pencil would work on such a small bird? There are videos on broomstick method on the forums. You basically pin the bird down with s broomstick across its neck and give the legs a firm, swift tug until you feel a pop. I think. @Wyorp Rock ?
    Wyorp Rock and The Phantom like this.
  3. Fishkeeper

    Fishkeeper Songster

    Oct 30, 2017
    Central Texas
    If you feel confident doing it, just get a pair of strong, sharp scissors, hold the bird in one hand, and cut the head off right at the base of the skull. It's a lot simpler and harder to mess up than cervical dislocation.

    For future hatches, if you want, you can try to get some pure ether. Put an animal in an airtight container with some ether on a rag, shut the container, and it'll fall asleep and not wake up. Then leave it in there for a few hours. Since it's an anesthetic instead of suffocation, it's humane.

    For something that little, I'd bury it under a plant somewhere.
  4. The Phantom

    The Phantom I love birds!!!

    Jan 9, 2017
    SE Wisconsin
  5. The Dapper Duck

    The Dapper Duck Songster

    Apr 9, 2019
    Coastal Humboldt, CA
    There is actually peer reviewed literature steering away from asphyxiation in neonates. It takes a lot longer than in adult animals and should be avoided if possible. I would go with scissors.
    micstrachan and The Phantom like this.
  6. Wyorp Rock

    Wyorp Rock Enabler

    Sep 20, 2015
    Southern N.C. Mountains
    I'm so sorry to hear about your quail chick :hugs

    I'm not trying to be blunt, for lack of better words, here goes - for chicks and juveniles I would chop the head off. It's quickest. For babies, I wrap them in a paper towel, using a large heavy razor sharp knife, I cut the head off. The towel pretty much holds all together. Something that small I have a little cardboard box ready and put the paper towel wrapped chick in the box and bury it.
    chkva and micstrachan like this.
  7. Fishkeeper

    Fishkeeper Songster

    Oct 30, 2017
    Central Texas
    Right, it would be inhumane to suffocate it. I'm not advising one of the carbon dioxide suffocation methods like the baking soda one. I'm advising ether.
    I have a neighbor who's old enough that she had dental surgery done back when they still used ether, and I asked her about it. I've also done some reading. You feel a bit loopy at first, and light sedation can induce euphoria, but ether sedation isn't unpleasant. It can cause nausea and headaches after waking up, but that's not really an issue here. Ether used to be used frequently to euthanize animals. I think the reason it's not used any more is partially safety (it's highly flammible and can affect you if you aren't careful), partially because it can be a bit unpredictable how long the animal will live. If you can just keep the box shut for a few hours, that'll do the trick.
  8. Sequel

    Sequel Crowing

    My sister's kids had miniature hamsters. When one of them needed to go to college she would go out and dig a hole, wrap the client in Kleenex, gently place it in the hole and give it a jolly good whack with a shovel. I think the long shovel handle helped, you know? Kind of gave some distance emotionally but surely effective.
  9. micstrachan

    micstrachan Free Ranging

    From everything I’m reading here, I’d go with chopping/cutting the head off. You’ve got this.
    Sequel likes this.

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