Should I be proud of myself, or ashamed?


11 Years
Nov 11, 2008
Ive been raising chickens for several years now and hatching them with great success, but. On many occasions I have had a chicken with legs spraddled out or in or up and Ive done all I know to do and all I can find out to do. Even made a sling for one who grew up without ever taking a step. I spent more time on that baby than I did the 40 others that ran around my ponderosa.
I stopped doing that. This last batch I had, one was more twisted up than I have ever seen. I did the band aid thing, I helped it to eat, drink and I wore myself out worrying about this little thing that I probably caused by some shift in humidity or whatever to be crippled.
I took it to the garbage can and with a pair of very sharp scissors I quickly with one quick clip, took its head off. There was no crying, there was no suffering. I just quickly ended this battle of life and death and the back breaking battle to help it live. Instead I helped it die. And Im proud of me.
What do you think?


10 Years
Mar 8, 2009
Dillingham, Alaska
although it is painful for us to do and makes us sad at times, it is sometimes the right thing to do. the chick would have lived a painful life and died a painful death.

also, when you get chicks with spraddle legs and they survive it's a good idea to mark them and not use them for breeding. in theory it may help prevent the problem.


The Welsh Witch
11 Years
Nov 2, 2008
You should be very happy with yourself.
It is not easy to do this. but you have saved this little chick from suffering.

My son told me a while ago that he could never understand me as he grew up. because I was always the one who would take pet dogs to the vet, and would end their suffering. But now all of a sudden he can see.

Even when my brother's dogs got poisoned I was called to deal with them, only 2 little puppies, but he flipped and could not let them go, he was trying to warm them up.

My son's dilemma was that I love animals but I am the one that respects their life enough to do what is needed. I would not allow an animal to suffer to feed some emotional need in me.

You did good. be Proud.



11 Years
Jun 29, 2008
New Hampshire
This is a subject that can cause a lot of discomfort for a lot of people.

Humans are the only species that in their infinite quest for what ever reason will,
go to extreme measures to maintain a life that should have naturally expired.
There is a long list of measures taken in every ones daily life to back this up.
The difference comes when one individual says to them self , how much longer can I watch the suffering and still feel good about my heroic efforts?
Some times the Heroic Efforts are more suffering and more pain than another species should have had to endure.

I have no issue with ending somethings pain and anguish.
My conscience would tell me its better to eternally sleep than live a life of eternal pain and suffering.
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The Welsh Witch
11 Years
Nov 2, 2008
gypsy, I agree with what you say.

I am not cruel in any way, it has always really upset me to end a pet's life, when they have been faithful companions. But I think it is realistic to accept that we would not like to die of cancer, being denied pain relief and appropriate care, and to watch a pet suffer because of cancer or a horrific accident is not loving the pet.

It is answering some need in us above the need of the pet.

I would fight to help any creature to have a good life as the OP has done in the past, but you have to make an assessment if the animal can sustain life in a good way, and if not then it is more cruel to keep them alive. It is tough. So they should be proud of having made that decision, and honouring the creature.


10 Years
Feb 28, 2009
Southern Illinois
AJ, I am very happy you managed it. You have accomplished the one thing that worries me.
You give me a glimmer of hope that I may be able to get over my block. Thank you for being brave an posting this.

chilling in muscadine

{ I love being disfunctual }
11 Years
Jun 8, 2008
muscadine, al.
Please in the future place a grafic warning in your title to the thread. It would be most appreciated by those that can not stomach the reading. Thanks in advance I hope.


14 Years
Mar 24, 2008
Salt Lake City / Sugarhood
Personally, I don't have a problem with the "graphic" description, but I always do appreciate a warning when there are pics included.

As to the OP, I think you did the right thing and I agree with those who point out that we humans interfere too often on the side of helping the sick and weak who ordinarily would die a very natural death. That natural death may well be more painful and drawn-out than an expeditious culling such as you facilitated.


10 Years
Mar 9, 2009
Harford County Maryland
I'm a huge sap about animals but I think you did the right thing. Even with my dogs and cats, I try to gauge their quality of life when they get older, and I usually opt to put them down before they are totally miserable. (I don't put them down just because they are old and slow, but I don't let an incurable illlness play out for months on end)

I'd rather they have a full happy life that ends quickly than one whose end is a long struggle against losing odds.


Wanna-be Farmer
11 Years
Dec 16, 2008
It is hard, I had to snip the head off a quail chick yesterday same reason, I usually use other methods but I think I will do the snipping from now on it was actually easier on me and the chick I think. I have a wellsummer that hatched with a twisted foot. I have made it a cast of sorts with a staw and some cut foam from a egg carton but If it does not get better then I will cull it the same way. It is never easy but does have to be done, you should NOT be ashamed, at all.

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