How do you put a dog down that is suffering? A Comprehensive Guide

Humanely Shooting or Killing My Dog at Home: Acceptable Methods

The method for killing a sick dog must:

  • Be done in a humane way
  • Use a painless, fast, and effective manner
  • Examples of legal methods of killing animals include:

  • Shooting the animal so that it will die immediately
  • Injecting the animal with a drug or substance that will kill it peacefully
  • These are both examples of humanely “putting down” your dog at home.

    Injecting an animal with the correct substance to peacefully put them to sleep can be difficult, so many owners opt for a licensed animal handler to come to their home. This is often a more peaceful option for your pet than bringing them to the vet’s office.

    Laws About Killing a Healthy Animal Yourself

    If your dog could have a decent standard of living for several years, you can’t kill them. Killing a healthy and happy animal yourself is always considered illegal.

    Your options under these circumstances are:

  • Keep the dog
  • Surrender them to a shelter
  • Find them a new home
  • You also can’t abandon a dog or let them go free. Also, some shelters have the right to euthanize healthy dogs. This falls under their own business ordinances and state laws.

    You can never kill a domesticated animal that doesn’t belong to you (except in rare circumstances, such as when a dog is on your property or posing a danger to animal or human life). This is considered the destruction of property in the eyes of the law.

    Legally Killing My Dog or Pet: Acceptable Reasons

    Owner-induced euthanasia is only legal if your pet is:

  • Medically so sick or injured that it is near death
  • Medically “not fit” for living any longer (such as severe brain damage, at risk of losing multiple limbs, etc.)
  • Most owners consult with a veterinarian before determining if an animal is near death or unfit for living a long and healthy life. A vet’s conclusion may be that your dog has weeks or months to live. This allows you to take the dog home and make a personal decision about the right time to let them go.

    In some situations, the clinic can be too expensive or too far away (some clinics do offer phone and video appointments), so people must decide independently.

    Keep in mind that most dogs can lead happy and full lives with missing limbs, blindness, deafness, or other special needs.

    They may be “not fit” in your eyes, or the level of care might be more than you can handle, but there are owners out there who are willing to take in animals with special needs.

    Putting my dog to sleep 31 01 2018