Acceptable Methods of Euthanasia




Methods of euthanizing animals assigned to IACUC protocols must follow the most recently published AVMA Guidelines for the Euthanasia of Animals whenever possible. In cases where specific guidelines are absent for a particular species or situation, methods published by professional societies may be used with citation. Protocols that do not intend to euthanize animals must still provide a means of euthanasia in case of emergency.

Personnel conducting euthanasia must be trained in the specific methods used. Consult the veterinary staff if you need more information about methods, or training in any method.


Methods of Euthanasia

Euthanasia methods applicable to research and teaching animals assigned to IACUC animal use protocols are described in the AVMA Guideline for Euthanasia of Animals. Review this document for more information and details. Please note that the acceptability of a method applies only to the species for which it is listed.


Euthanasia methods listed as acceptable in the AVMA Guidelines for Euthanasia of Animals are methods that consistently produce a humane death when used as the sole means of euthanasia. The use of acceptable methods requires IACUC approval (protocol approval) prior to use.

Acceptable with Conditions

Euthanasia methods listed as acceptable with conditions in the AVMA Guidelines for Euthanasia of Animals are methods that require certain conditions to be met to consistently produce humane death. These methods may have a greater potential for operator error or safety hazard and therefore may require additional training and oversight or they may require a secondary method of euthanasia to ensure death. These methods are equivalent to acceptable methods when all conditions for the method are met. The use of acceptable with conditions methods requires IACUC approval (protocol approval) prior to use.


Euthanasia methods listed as unacceptable in the AVMA Guidelines are considered inhumane under any condition, or they pose a substantial human health risk and should never be utilized.


Approved Date

Revised Date

Additional Tags

  • Euthanasia
  • Rodents
  • Mice
  • Swine
  • Poultry
  • Wildlife