How To Euthanize A Fish Without Clove Oil

Ok, so we all hope we won’t need to know how to euthanize a fish without clove oil. But truth be known if you own an aquarium you will at some time have fish that will get old, ill, or catch some sort of disease. It is a fact of life that nothing will live forever.

With that in mind, it is always worth being prepared for the worst. This isn’t the nicest topic I’ve ever written about but it is one that is well worth a mention.

When it comes to getting rid of things like snails in your tank it is a bit of an easier task to sort out. People don’t really get attached to things like snails and just tend to crush them up and feed them to the fish. Or simply put some snail-eating fish in there to dispose of them and hunt them down. I think because creatures such as worms and snails don’t show any type of personality as such people find it easier to dispose of them.

But what about your fish!

Some of these little beauties may have been with you for years, you probably talk to them at feeding time and gaze at them for hours on end. So if and when they get too poorly to carry on, it may be time to intervene. A lot of the time nature will do its thing and do the job for you. But on occasions, you may have to do the tedious task yourself. If you have no clove oil at hand there are several ways this can be achieved quickly and efficiently. So let’s take a look at how to euthanize a fish without clove oil.

3 Ways To Euthanize A Fish Without Clove Oil

Now is maybe a good time to go get yourself some clove oil. Clove oil is probably the nicest way to end a fish’s life. But if for some reason you haven’t got any here are the next 3 best ways.

Ask Your Local Vet

This is an option that some people prefer to do. It saves you having the pain and heartache of having to do the dreadful deed yourself. Most vets will happily euthanize your fish for you. The only drawback to this method, as you can probably imagine is money. Obviously, vets have to make a living and they will charge you for the privilege. If money is no option and you are a bit squeamish maybe this is the right choice for you.

Use some Baking Soda

Baking soda is another way to euthanize a fish with a fairly minimal amount of stress. It is a fairly straightforward method but isn’t as quick as others. Simply get a container and add one spoonful of baking powder to 1 cupful of tank water. This process will take between 10 and 15 minutes so it certainly isn’t the quickest method.

A Blow To The Head

Ok, this really doesn’t sound very nice at all. But, if done properly the fish will be put out of its misery in a split second. Lay the fish down on a flat hard surface and take some kind of blunt instrument. I have some butter knives with quite bulky handles that I have used before. Hold the fish upright using your thumb and forefinger. Take your instrument and with a short sharp blow hit once on the back of the head. This should be enough to kill the fish instantly with no pain involved.

How To Euthanize A Fish With Clove Oil

We have looked at a few ways of how to euthanize a fish without clove oil. But what if you actually have some clove oil? How do you use it to humanely kill your fish?

One of the main benefits of clove oil is that it works as an anesthetic, putting your fish to sleep. Therefore the fish dies peacefully with a minimum amount of pain and suffering.

  1. Get a small plastic container that has a lid, add 5 drops of clove oil and add some tank water.
  2. Give it a good shake to mix the oil and the water together then put to one side.
  3. Grab yourself a bigger container and add some tank water.
  4. Next add the small containers content into the big container and give it a quick stir.
  5. Add the poorly fish.
  6. Wait 20 minutes, If the gills are still moving add a few more drops of clove oil eventually your fish will stop breathing.

How Not To Euthanize A Fish

The above methods are some of the friendliest ways to end a fish’s life. The next couple of methods I really wouldn’t recommend.

Freezing Your Fish

If you search across the Internet you will probably come across this method of killing a fish. I just don’t like this way of doing it. It is not humane nor is it instant.

The Toilet Flush

This is probably the most common way that people think is ok to kill a fish. This to me is probably one of the worst ways of euthanizing a fish. The fish itself certainly isn’t going to die instantly. It is going to suffer from a lot of pain and stress, please do not use this method.

Should I Remove Dying Fish From The Tank?

100% Yes you should remove dying fish from your tank asap. Check the fish for any signs of disease, any growths lumps, and bumps are a sure sign. If the fish is diseased it could well pass the disease to other fish in the tank. The quicker you segregate it the better. The fish could also be suffering from severe stress. Check your water parameters are as they should be. Also, check the fish over for any signs of being bullied. This will usually result in small cuts or fins that are ripped or damaged.

To Conclude

I think all aquarists should know how to euthanize a fish without clove oil. If you have some clove oil then awesome, but not all beginners remember to put it on their shopping list. Killing a fish really isn’t a very nice experience. But unfortunately, no fish live forever and it is something you will probably have to do sooner or later. By using the methods mentioned in this article it will make it a less painful affair for the fish.

Frequently Asked Questions

Where can I buy clove oil from?

You can buy clove oil from places like Holland and Barrett, Boots, Amazon, or by clicking on this link.

What Is Clove Oil?

Clove oil is an organic oil that is made from the clove tree. The oil itself comes from the dried flower buds that are distilled for a certain amount of time.

Is Clove Oil Expensive?

Buying clove oil really isn’t going to bankrupt you. You can buy some good quality clove oil for around £10.

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