quickest method to put day olds to sleep?

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by rosegal, Mar 7, 2013.

  1. rosegal

    rosegal Songster

    Dec 6, 2008
    Tustin, CA
    I have a chick that has somehow still survived without its umbilical closed. I have done everything to fix it and the insides are still coming out...how would you put it out of its misery? I have my methods, but want to hear yours? TIA
  2. jbs

    jbs Chirping

    May 23, 2011
    Sorry about your chick. I had to cull my first chick last week and it was pretty awful, I did some research on BYC and most seem to use the method of snipping off the head. Sounds bloody but is very fast. A few drown or put the chick in the feezer to die, both those methods seem too slow to me. I opted for CO2, we have a cannister we use for beer making. I put my chick in a box with some shavings, sealed it up as best i could with plastic wrap then put the CO2 hose inside the box. The advice I got was to start slowly so it would put the chick to sleep rather than act as an irritant. She was out within 4-5 seconds, then we cranked up the CO2 higher and left her for a few minutes. When we checked on her 5 minutes later, she was gone. Still sad about it, but I know we did the right thing.

    I read somewhere that you can do something similar with baking sode and vinegar, or with starter fluid fumes, but I am glad we have a CO2 cannister. It was fast and my chick did just go to sleep. Good luck with whatever method you use.
  3. tec27

    tec27 Songster

    May 6, 2011
    Get a big freezer bag. Put the chick in the freezer bag with a bowl of vinegar. Toss a bunch of baking soda in the vinegar and close the bag. The chick will just fall asleep. Thats what i do anyway.
  4. ChickensRDinos

    ChickensRDinos Songster

    Aug 19, 2012
    Los Angeles
    I would behead it. It is over instantly and hard to mess up.
  5. FCFarm

    FCFarm In the Brooder

    Apr 30, 2012
    Ocala, FL
    I'm so sorry. I haven't personally had to put down a chick, but I know the day may come.

    The breeder where I bought my day old chicks said it is best to break the neck. It sounds harsher than using CO2, but he said it is the fastest, most humane way. The only problem for me is knowing how much force to apply for the neck to break quickly and cleanly.

    jbs, thanks for sharing your experience. It sounds like your chick was gone quickly. You did the right thing. I think the CO2 canister would work faster(and with far less suffering) than the vinegar mix or car exhaust. I agree that drowning or freezing sound like the least humane options.

    I'm open to hearing what others have to say, as I feel I should be prepared/informed about this. At the end of the day, I think any method is still better than letting an animal die slowly from irreversible injury or illness. The resulting infection or starvation (because they are too weak or unable to eat) will cause far more suffering.

    Good luck and kind thoughts to everyone dealing with this issue.
  6. heronz

    heronz Songster

    Jun 8, 2009
    I agree with tec27.
    We did it that way and it was very fast with no mess.
    If I was a chick I would much rather that than the other methods if given a choice.
  7. enggass

    enggass Songster

    Mar 8, 2010
    Mid-Coast Maine
    I did the same once. Vinegar and Baking Soda. Gasses them...

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