Euthanasia- When its time to say goodbye

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Euthanasia- When its time to say goodbye

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  • When its time to say goobye to a horse
  • Horse euthanasia what happens? shoot

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    09-18-2007, 12:54 AM
Euthanasia- When its time to say goodbye

This is a horrible subject, but we all have to deal with it at some stage.
I have a horse that needs to be put down, for reasons I will not go into at the moment.
She is a lease horse, but I have been asked to organise everything and the owners would like the lethal injection. If she were my own horse, I would (sounds horrible) have her shot.
My fiance is a qualified slaughterman so there is no question of weather it would be done right or not. And I have heard so many terrible stories of the lethal injection. One as recently as 4 weeks ago.

What would everyone else do?
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    09-18-2007, 04:20 AM
Honestly, we've done both. Since it is not your horse, I would do what the owner wants. Why doesn't the owner put the horse down?
    09-18-2007, 09:22 AM
This past spring we had 3 horses that had to be put down, they were shot, I think I knew one horse that was put down with a needle...what is bad about it? I haven't heard about any bad storys?
    09-18-2007, 11:53 PM
I would say use the drugs. Shooting a horse, if you miss the exact mark, is also a very bad thing.

Your fiance kills stuff for a living? Hope he doesn't practice on you.
    09-19-2007, 04:49 PM
Thanks guys.
The owners have no where to bury her, so she is going to be buried on our property. So she asked me to organise it. She originally asked me to get the injection, but after speaking to her again, would like her shot as she is also not keen on the injection.

I have heard some terrible stories of horses galloping on the ground and thrashing around, literally for hours, while they slowly die if the drug isnt administered correctly.

I'm certain my fiance wont have and trouble 'missing' her. I know it all sounds horrible, but i'm trying to decide what would be best for the horse here. I just adore this horse and it will be devistating no matter how she goes.

The D day is next tuesday.

And Horse_Guy - it doubt I would be here if my fiance practiced on me.....
    09-19-2007, 07:10 PM
Around here, if you want to shoot( I know it sounds awful) your horse, you can take them to the zoo, that way, insted of buriring your horse, the zoo uses them to feed there lions and tigers, that way the horse can be reused, not wasted , insted of being in the ground....that way, one life is lost( the horse) and one is gainned( feeding the lion so he/she can live).
some horses that are special , we burry but some go to the zoo.
    09-20-2007, 10:54 AM
I would really question where the stories about horses doing wild things after getting an injection come from and what drug was used.
Some of these stories may be very old and from the era when something other than an overdose of pentobarbitol was the common way to euthanize a horse. In the past other drugs were used that were not as quick and humane and these kinds of reactions might occur, but unless you are using someone who is not keeping up with the times or is really cutting corners on the price of his drugs, you aren't likely to see these drugs used anymore. Many of these stories have been circulating for many many years and don't take into account the changes in how things are done that have occured in veterinary medicine.

Euthanasia is done most commonly with an overdose of pentobarbitol now and this is a general anesthetic. Basically what happens is that the horse is anesthetized past the point of safety. This is done quickly so that you bypass the planes of anesthesia including surgical anesthesia and go straight to over-dose. It is a very quick process, both for humane reasons and also to reduce risk to the vet and handler.

There is less risk of a horrible scene with a lethal injection than with a gun shot, even if the person shooting the animal is a skilled marksman and knows where to aim--this is just because all it takes is a small movement of the horse's head to throw off the aim and lead to a shot horse rather than a dead horse.

I'm making this point for those who may at some point have to consider euthanasia for their horse and don't have someone who can shoot the horse for them. There isn't any reason to be afraid of chemical euthanasia though it may still not be something that some owners will want to be there for because it is abrupt. I have been involved in many many euthanasias over the years (mostly client's animals but a few of my own) and I am much more comfortable with chemical euthanasia even for my own animals.
    09-20-2007, 07:53 PM
So what your saying is that it would be safer if euthanized my horse in sted if the other way?...
I lease and the ture owner said that if anything happend to the horse beyond any help we could do she was to go to the zoo. Humm
    09-21-2007, 12:09 AM
I have heard that in some states that you are not allowed to bury a horse after the injection due to pollution to groundwater. Do you have any info on this? I have heard that after the injection you must creamate the horse, which is very costly. Just trying to get my facts straight.
    09-21-2007, 09:45 AM
Some areas may not allow burial due to possible ground water contamination--it's not whole states, but rather specific areas where the risk to ground water is sufficient to require restriction on burial. You would need to check with the your local extension office to see if there are areas where you (specifically) couldn't bury small animals or livestock.

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