How Dog Get Euthanized In Kill Shelters - DoggyCrap
How Dogs Get Euthanized In Kill Shelters

How Dogs Get Euthanized In Kill Shelters

October 18, 2018


Imagine one day being abandoned on the side of the road by the one human you’ve invested all of your love and trust into. You’re later taken away into a jail house that’s filled with sadness, confusion, and pain. Just 10 days after this horrific event, you’ve been entered to play in a lottery of life and death. With an assigned number inside of a hat, you pray that whatever numbers are displayed on the board that day, you get a slight chance of getting rescued. Each year approximately 1.5 million shelter animals are put down because there is no one willing to adopt and care for them.

Do people who drop their pets off at high-intake shelters really know what they are doing? If they knew just what happens to dogs after their owners walk out the door, shelters might be a lot emptier.

How Dog Get Euthanized

Most people tend to believe that dogs are put down in a happy and caring environment so they get to enjoy the last moments of their life. The reality is quite cruel and disturbing. Animals can sense when bad things are about to happen, including death.  For a dog, the shelter is an immediate sensory overload. A dizzying diversity of scents, sounds and strangers. This not only makes it harder to get adopted because most look for a “connection” and a happy puppy to bring home, but a terrifying death that results in the use of force. They are forced out of their cage by their neck and injected with chemicals and put into plastic bags to make room for future victims. 


Types of Execution Methods:

  • Lethal Injection:Lethal injection is the most-preferred method to euthanize dogs and cats, since it causes the least stress for the animals and a somewhat minimal amount of stress for the humans involved. Unconsciousness, respiratory then cardiac arrest follow rapidly, usually within 30 seconds. Observers generally describe the method as leading to a quick and peaceful death.
  • Gas Chamber:Typical professional type includes individual small cages for numbers of animals which are all gassed at the same time, although AVMA guidelines for certain gases require euthanasia individually. Carbon monoxide is often used, but some states in the US have banned its use in animal shelters. Although carbon monoxide poisoning is not particularly painful, the conditions in the gas chamber are often not humane

What Happens To The Bodies? 

Unlike humans, dogs are treated like trash and disposed in the most economical way possible. While family pets get a proper burial with a ceremony, shelter dogs are throw in landfills without any sympathy for life.  On euthanasia day shelters may euthanize a few, or hundreds, of pets, depending on the size of the shelter and their holding capacity. As such many dead dogs may be put into a bag together. One to three dogs may be placed in a bag, depending on their size. The bags are then either placed in the deep freeze or typically disposed of that day. Shelters often coordinate their euthanasia with body disposal so they do not have to store so many bodies in their freezers.

The Final Resting Place:

  • Cremation: This is most-expensive, so although this method is used, it is not considered typical due to the expense. The animal is burned to a power and the ashes are disposed of.

  • The Landfill: This is not allowed in some areas, but is a common disposal method around the country. Animals are thrown out like the trash you dispose of on your walk in the park. How would you feel if your body was dumped in some landfill? Even homeless people get a proper burial. 


How Can You Help? 

One of the biggest things one can do to save a life is to adopt from a kill shelter. You may protest all you want, but at the end of the day the shelter is playing a simple game of math. Too many people are opting to “buy” a pure breed dog for thousands of dollars thinking it will result in a magical and obedient pet. Another powerful way to help is to get a dog that you will keep for life. Don’t do the crime if you’re not willing to do the time. Animal shelters are filled beyond capacity with homeless animals, many of whom were former “pets” all because a child lost interest and no one else stepped in and took the time to provide training and care. When you adopt a dog, it is for life. You have to be prepared to adapt as life circumstances change — for example, if you have to move, you’ll need to take the extra time to find a new home that allows dogs.

Other Ways To Help: 

  • Donate:Shelters are terribly underfunded and unfortunately find themselves at the very bottom of society when it comes to help from the government. The more money these shelters are able to get the more space they can create to shelter animals and better care to keep them happy to increase adoption rates. Donate toys, food, bedding, and your time and dedication to ensure these animals get the best out of their misery. 
  • Educate Current Owners: Another colossal reason for over population at kill shelters is ignorance. People that can’t handle owning a pet bring them to a shelter thinking it will get adopted. Most people do fall in love with their furry friends and would not want them to be executed just because there is a lack of space in the building. Educate current owners of training methods and don’t be afraid to volunteer to take care of their pets. 



Sadly, 56 percent of dogs and 71 percent of cats that enter animal shelters are euthanized. More cats are euthanized than dogs because they are more likely to enter a shelter without any owner identification. Animals have feelings, they worry when we don’t come home on time and smile when we spend time with them. The sad truth is that these shelters have no choice but to execute these creatures because most of the human population believes the shelter is like any other day care for children. Would you send your child to die because they peed on your floor? Would you abandon your child simply because it requires too much love? Realize that most shelters are killing facilities and WE can only save their life by adopting from shelters and not some breeder.

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