Apparently freezing causes the blood to crystallize, which is a very painful process. It's regarded as inhumane by the AVMA.
The difficulty in not choosing to euthanise, is that some fish can linger on for a very low time with a declining quality of life. That to me personally, is unacceptable.
I had a fish that would sit with his spine bent on the bottom of the tank. For an animal, being immobilised like that where there's no escape from predators, must be a horrible feeling. It's also why fish often don't show any outward signs of disease until it's advanced enough to be seriously jeopardising their health.
I made the sad decision to euthanise my fish as he had already suffered through a couple of treatments and felt it was for the best. I have no doubts he would have lingered in that state for quite a while as he was otherwise healthy and eating.
Sometimes it is crueler to keep an animal alive than to put them out of their misery. I know that some people love animals as if they were human, but suffering from a terminal illness is one of the lines that separate humans from animals. A human can live through an terminal illness and all the suffering that comes with it because a human knows that even if the hope was in vain, at less the battle was well fought. Animals merely survive until an illness inevitably kills them. There is a difference between living with an illness until the bitter end and surviving an illness until the bitter end arrives. That difference is the reason why people know how to kill fish, dogs, cats, and every other type of pet.
It's isn't pleasant to think about, but humanely killing a suffering animal is more merciful than allowing the suffering continue.
Exactly, I used to work in a boarding facility and I have seen what keeping an animal alive that should be dead already can do to them. Animals that can't get up and urinate on themselves and are constantly in pain, and the owners just keep giving them narcotic pain medication and keep them alive anyway. The owner is to selfish to do what's right for the animal. Nature would never allow that to happen that's what predators are for.....
I say...if the animal cannot survive on it's own anymore, it's time to put them down. Leave them with their dignity and pride and don't make them suffer, just so you don't have to feel the pain of losing a pet you love.
Doing the RIGHT thing is often not the easiest thing to do.
Just my O2 cents.
Last edited by Bettas Rule; 10-13-2011 at 04:34 PM.
If you can't euthanize fish because you squemish, get over it. If they are truelly suffering with an illness they can't get over( Extreme Dropsy, Exteremely Advanced Fin Rot that's rottin away the body, etc.) it's best to euthanize them. I know it's hard, but if you truelly love your fish, it's really for the best.
I think some people should tone it down a bit. I am all for those who can euthanise and for those who can't and make their fish as comfortable as possible. To even say a person is not a great owner because they can't intentionally inflict death on their fish is not acceptable. I can't do it, but the amount of time, money, love and care I put into my adopted animals shows I am an excellent owner. I have had pets euthanised, and pets that have passed at home in comfort. You cannot compare other animals to fish, as all vets can euthanise any animal. Not many will euthanise fish, and you can never know which is done properly. This is a very grey scale situation.
When I had to put Sir Lefty down, I put water in the freezer and got it so it was below freezing. Then I dropped him in and he was gone in less than a second. If I had had money for clove oil and vodka, I would have done it that way, but I don't think the suffering was too great since it worked so quickly. I'm sorry your fish is so sick. It was super difficult for me when I had to put him down, but I know it was the best thing for him, even if it made me sad. Sometimes it's the only option left.Good luck in whatever method you choose. I'm sorry for your loss in advance. =(
^ Sweeda, This is what I had to do for my goldfish. They were so badly covered in fungus and floating, I knew they wouldn't make it the next couple of hours. IMO, I prefer the freezing method- you just have to get it super, super cold so they don't suffer.
Now Goldfish it is actually fine to freeze if you do it pretty slowly. (i.e fridge then freezer) Because they are colwater, they will slow down and start to hybernate like when a pond freezes, then they hybernate and die in their sleep. Actually, they can wake up, but if done really slowly. So don't do that.
I agree Pit, at first i was feeling a bit pushed out because i did euthanize my girl and i felt like i was being judged as cruel, either ways, give the best lives possible! :)
I think it is cruel to allow an animal to live and suffer. Keeping a dying animal while making it as "comfortable" as possible is just a selfish act done to satisfy the owner, not an act of humanity. There is little worse then making the decision to euthanize a loved pet whether it is a dog, cat, or fish or anything else but one thing that is worse is watching them die a long lingering death.