Department of Agriculture - Euthanasia - Physical methods.

Published: 2013-03-28

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(A) Penetrating captive bolt

(1) Captive bolt guns are powered by gunpowder or compressed air and must provide sufficient energy to penetrate the skull of the species on which they are being used.

(2) Penetrating captive bolt shall be suitably placed so that the projectile sufficiently disrupts a cerebral hemisphere and the brain stem causing a sudden loss of consciousness and resulting in humane death.

(3) The penetrating captive bolt gun should be held firmly against the head.

(4) All manufacturer's directions regarding caliber and powerload must be followed.

(B) Nonpenetrating captive bolt

(1) The nonpenetrating captive bolt does not have a projectile and is powered by gunpowder or compressed air; and must deliver a percussive blow which produces unconsciousness.

(2) The non penetrating captive bolt gun should be held firmly against the head.

(3) Must not be used as a sole means of euthanasia, except for animals weighing equal to or less than twelve pounds and poultry.

(4) All manufacturer's directions regarding caliber and powerload must be followed.

(C) Blunt force trauma

A single decisive blow that produces immediate depression of the central nervous system and destruction of brain tissue resulting in rapid unconsciousness and humane death.

(D) Gunshot

(1) Shooting must only be performed by personnel proficient in the use of firearms and only in jurisdictions that allow for legal firearm use. Personnel, the public, and nearby animal safety and well-being must be considered; as well as control of the animal whenever feasible.

(2) Gunshot must utilize bullets of suitable caliber depending on the size of the animal to be euthanized, and the projectile must enter the brain causing instant loss of consciousness and humane death.

(3) Ammunition for most animals must be a minimum caliber .22 solid point long rifle. For large mature animals, such as cattle and swine, the minimum caliber must be .22 magnum solid point long rifle.

(4) The gun is to be held as close as reasonably possible but not less than two inches from the head.

(E) Cervical dislocation - is the manual stretching or instrument assisted separation of the cervical vertebrae from the skull.

(F) Decapitation - is the rapid separation of the head from the neck.

(G) Electrocution

(1) One-step electrocution - must use alternating current applied to the head and the opposite side of the body behind the heart at the flank skin fold, causing simultaneous stunning and inducing cardiac fibrillation resulting in cerebral hypoxia.

(2) Two-step stunning and electrocution - the animal is first rendered unconscious by passing an alternating current across the head and followed immediately, in less than fifteen seconds, by passing the current from the head to the opposite side of the body behind the heart, or across the chest.

(H) Foam - is a water based product, utilizing a specialized delivery system that produces foam of the appropriate consistency to occlude the upper respiratory tract causing hypoxia in a rapid and humane manner.

(I) Maceration - is the use of a mechanical apparatus having rotating blades or projections that cause immediate fragmentation and death.

(J) Exsanguination - As a stand alone method is limited to use for ritual slaughter pursuant to sections 945.01 and 945.02 of the Revised Code. Exsanguination may be used to ensure death subsequent to stunning or in otherwise unconscious animals.