Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee

Humane Methods of Euthanasia

The key reference regarding humane methods of euthanasia is the AVMA Panel on Euthanasia (2013), Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association JAVMA 218:669-696.

The table below summarizes recommended methods by species:

Species Recommended Methods
all small rodents, including mice, rats, gerbils, hamsters Carbon dioxide inhalation
Carbon dioxide inhalation plus cervical dislocation
Anesthetic overdose
guinea pigs, rabbits, tree shrews, all other species Injectable anesthetic overdose

Please see: Memorandum on CO2 Euthanasia of Rodents

A complete summary of recommended agents and doses by species is available from the Institute for Animal Studies.

Euthanasia of experimental animals is a service provided by the Institute for Animal Studies free-of-charge. Purple “Euthanize this animal” cards can be signed and put on the cages of any rodents to be euthanized. If larger species need to be euthanized, please contact Ms. Maritza Arce, Senior Veterinary Technician, at 718-839-7140.

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