euthenasia (of animals)

iVillage Member
Registered: 02-28-2007
euthenasia (of animals)
21
Sat, 06-09-2007 - 5:53pm

So I was watching tv last night and it sparked me to thinking (usually a dangerous thing, I always tell my husband that leaving a woman to her thoughts can be dangerous lol). Anyway I was watching animal planet. I am an animal lover. I was watching animal heros phonix and there was a case in which they rescued 49 dogs from the home of a dog hoarder. The animal cop said that since a lot of them were older and inbred and had health and behavior issues that many of them may have to be euthenised.

Now my whole life I was taught that abortion was wrong. And now I am pro-choice. So last night I was thinking about animals being put to sleep and that I have never had a problem with an animal being humanely euthenised (I mean unless they are being put to sleep just because the owner doesn't want them anymore). In fact growing up we had at least a few animals that I can remember that were put to sleep due to health reasons. One was a beloved dog who kept bloating and had unsuccessful surgeries to fix the problem, one a cat who had feline lukemia, and one (the hardest one of all) was my sisters dear cat who had kidney failure. So my parents had made the decision to instead of letting them suffer to put them down.

So like usual I have a thread that I am not sure where I am going. I guess I was just thinking that growing up in the religion that I grew up in that taught that taking a life was wrong, why did they not have a problem with humanely ending a suffering animal's life?

I mean OF COURSE I place more importance on a human life but a lot of people with pets consider their pets to be members of their family. Would they chose to end the life of a human family member?

And for the families that chose to have an abortion because of a disease or defect, is that more humane than having a child that could spend their whole life (whether long or short) suffering?

So I am sorry if this was not a very well formed post. I just like to read how other people think and your opinions on this.

I do know that if I had a pet that was suffering and there was no fix and it would not have a good quality of life I would put it to sleep, but I still do not know what I would do if I found out that I was pregnant with a baby that had the disease that my sister has (Muscular Dystrophy).

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iVillage Member
Registered: 10-06-2010
Sun, 06-10-2007 - 1:05pm

I have had many pets over the years and I have had to have many put to sleep because of various health reasons. Since I am child free by choice, my pets ARE my children and I do what is best for them, they are as much of a member of my family as my DH is to me. It may sound odd to people but my cats will get the same care as I get until they are to sick and nothing can be done.

I fully believe that every living things deserves care and love. Sometimes that means putting an animals to sleep and sometimes that means abortion from saving a child from a life of horror with either a horrible disease or a life with abusive parents. My MIL has bad MS, she cannot function on her own, my FIL has to take 100% care of her, she has said many times she would rather be dead because living her life is not really living, mentally she is fine but physically she can't do anything for herself, she can't even go to the bathroom by herself without help.

I see my own grandmother at 88 not being able to do what she loves anymore because of her age and health. I would rather be dead than live the way she has to, with lots of pain and not being able to do what she loves to do.

I personally would rather be "put to sleep" so to speak than live a life that is not really living.

iVillage Member
Registered: 02-15-2005
Mon, 06-11-2007 - 9:40am

Well, to keep it sort of abortion related -

In horse breeding, if the US shows twins, we always pinch one off. It's REALLY bad horsemanship to allow twins to gestate.

In dog breeding, I've had to cull puppies. I also got into it with my vet once. We had taken in a pit bull off the street - I made an appointment for her shots and spaying, and before that happened, one of the neighborhood kids got her out of my yard and allowed a male to address her.

I told the vet to do the spay anyway. He wanted to wait to see if she'd cycle because he felt the puppies had a right to life. I told him if she delivered pups, I'd drown them the minute they were born. The shelters are overflowing with pits and I wasn't going to add to the problem. So he did the spay, and luckily she wasn't pregnant.


iVillage Member
Registered: 07-29-2004
Mon, 06-11-2007 - 10:03am
I've seen many spays on animals that were pg. Some were even done by a PL vet! I never understood his stance that he was PL when it came to humans, who can make their own choices, and aborting a dog or cat who could not. We had many arguments over this, good thing he never fired me. I too have never understood PLers who will euthanize a family pet, but the only answer I've ever gotten is that God made man to rule over the animals, which is a little insensitive to animals. Especially since they also want to rule over other humans and make their choices for them.
iVillage Member
Registered: 10-06-2010
Mon, 06-11-2007 - 10:41am

"I told him if she delivered pups, I'd drown them the minute they were born."

That would have been animal cruelty and you would have been in big trouble for that if someone had found out.

iVillage Member
Registered: 02-15-2005
Mon, 06-11-2007 - 10:49am

And no one would have found out.

Would it have been less cruel to dump them in a shelter where they'd have been euthanized or ended up in questionable hands?


iVillage Member
Registered: 10-06-2010
Mon, 06-11-2007 - 10:52am
No, it would have been nicer to have raised them and found them homes with people you approved of.
iVillage Member
Registered: 02-15-2005
Mon, 06-11-2007 - 11:04am

And that wasn't going to happen either.

I firmly believe the ONLY breeding that should be done should be by experienced professionals who want to improve the breed.

I had NO clue about the genetic history of either dog. Turns out the bitch I took in had serious and dangerous psychological issues and had to be destroyed. There would have been NOTHING responsible about potentially passing temperament problems on - especially in a breed that already has such serious PR issues.

I'm not worried about being "nice" - I don't have Cute Puppy Syndrome.


iVillage Member
Registered: 06-03-2007
Mon, 06-11-2007 - 11:07am

For three years I worked in a veterinary hospital (okay 1 year in a satellite clinic, then 2 in the large teaching hospital).

From March to September people would leave baskets of litters by the door for us (they never came round to the overnight emergency entrance to be seen). By April, when all the no-kill shelters for 40 miles around were full up, we would have to either find a nurse to foster the litters or euthanize them. By the end of the month, every nurse had a litter at home (bottle-feeding every 2 hours round the clock) and we were at the end of the line.

Spaying the pit was the right thing, and as much as I love pits and their affectionate, family-oriented nature, it's true that they have a bad rap and any pups would have been discriminated against in the shelter. Saying what you had to to the vet was understandable, and either he knew you were just making a point or his Pro-Life leanings were truly thin.

I have never felt regret about assisting at a pregnant spay. If the litter was well-developed, we injected a little euthanasia solution into each amniotic sac right after removing the uterus.

As a nice post-script, 3 programs operating for 15 years in that area have largely turned this problem around in the past 8. The no-kills don't fill up until late summer now. It's been great to see such an improvement in such a short time. Consider supporting your local version of:
a) nonprofit programs subsidizing spay/neuter costs for low-income owners
b) robust trap-neuter-release group focusing on the feral cat population, neutering 80+ feral cats one weekend a month from March to October, and re-releasing them to prevent neighboring populations from moving in.
c) local shelters refusing to adopt out an intact animal. Neuter is included in the price of the adoption.

iVillage Member
Registered: 02-28-2007
Mon, 06-11-2007 - 11:24am

>>I firmly believe the ONLY breeding that should be done should be by experienced professionals who want to improve the breed.<<

I agree, that is why when we are in a place where we can have a pet we are going to get it "fixed".

I think it is sad the excuses that people use for not spaying/nuetering their pets. My bil and his wife had 2 pugs (a brother and sister) who they got as a wedding gift. They said that they were not going to "fix" them because they heard that it altered their personalities. Well, boy pug impregnanted girl pug (remember they were siblings). And breeding pugs is dangerous enough the way it is, the flat nose dog breeds often have trouble in delivering. Since the dogs they had were inbred in the first place and already had problems such as skin issues and allergies that meant the puppies would definately have the same problems. Mother dog had 4 puppies and one died a few days after birth. They found 2 of the others good homes and the third they kept. And thankfully they spayed the female and the pup they kept (also a female). But they don't want to nueter the male because of the whole personailty excuse.

I think you did the right thing with the pit (and having her spayed, and later put down).

I think that it is sad the people who are pet store breeders who just have their dogs keep popping out puppies to make a buck with no regard to the animals or the problems that they could be causing. That is why we will NEVER buy a dog at a pet store. Although they deserve good homes too why contribue (and encourage) the problem.

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iVillage Member
Registered: 02-15-2005
Mon, 06-11-2007 - 11:27am

Thank you for that post!

I LOVE the bully breeds - they really are awesome, but they also require extra vigilant ownership, IMO.

Maybe being a country person has made me more...pragmatic? We are closer to the life/death cycle, so it's not abhorrent to us? I dunno....


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