Pain-Free Euthanasia For Your Small Bird

At some point you may be confronted with the possibility of having to euthanize your loved bird.  When life is noticeably uncomfortable for a bird, the right thing to do is to help them pass as easy as possible. 

Just recently I had to do this to two of my birds that were sickly & elderly, with no hope of recovery.  It was hard because these two had been with me for a long time, but I knew it was the right thing to do.

A bird friend of mine recommended the following.  Using this process, the birds just fall asleep without pain.

You will need the following:

  • Plastic container with a lid, big enough for the bird but not extra room.
  • Straw or tube- I use an ink pen casing.
  • Tape
  • Helium balloon

First, poke a few holes in the bottom of the plastic container.  This allows the helium gas to slowly push out the oxygen.

Second, prepare a hole for the straw to fit in the top lid.  Fit the straw in the hole and tape it to create a seal.

Third, when ready place the bird in the container with the lid on. 

Fourth, untie the balloon, keep it pinched, at the same time fit it on the tube.  Release the gas slowly into the container.  Your bird should fall asleep quickly. Just in case there isn't enough helium in one balloon have another one ready to go also. A 2nd person can be ready with the back up balloon.

I hold my finger on the top of the straw several minutes after the birds show no movement, to be sure they have passed.

This particular container can hold 2 birds at once.


Note - The holes in the bottom allow the air to be pushed out when the gas is released.  The helium gas does not burn the birds lungs or cause pain.  I have only tried this on small birds (canaries).