Chapter 901:12-1 Euthanasia

901:12-1-01 Definitions and general considerations.

(A) Euthanasia is the causing of humane death, through the rapid loss of consciousness followed by cardiac and respiratory arrest and the ultimate loss of brain function.

(B) "Humane death" is death that results through utilization of the methods established by this chapter.

(C) The only acceptable methods of euthanasia are those listed in this chapter and are to be used as the exclusive means of euthanasia, except in slaughter facilities already governed by federal or state law, or ritual slaughter as described in Chapter 945. of the Revised Code.

(D) Euthanasia for animals must be performed when the likelihood for recovery is poor and the condition cannot be effectively relieved by best species management and medically appropriate procedures.

(E) Occurrence of death will be confirmed by the absence of:

(1) Breathing for five minutes;

(2) A heart beat for five minutes; and

(3) A corneal reflex (a blink reflex to touching of the eye.)

(F) If death does not occur, the same method must be repeated or another approved method of euthanasia must be immediately performed.

(G) Disposal of animals after confirmation of death must be performed in accordance with section 941.14 of the Revised Code.

(H) Mass euthanasia

For unusual conditions which require euthanasia of populations, such as wide spread disease eradication and exigent circumstances , the director may authorize alternate methods pursuant to section 941.11 of the Revised Code. The alternate methods must minimize animal pain and suffering to the extent reasonably possible while considering the threat to human health and safety.

(I) Nothing in the rules adopted in division 901:12 of the Administrative Code shall be construed to prevent a licensed veterinarian, or other person acting under the veterinarian's supervision, from meeting the standards set forth in Chapter 4741. of the Revised Code or rules promulgated thereunder.

(J) No person shall bear any liability under this chapter for using a non-approved method of euthanasia to prevent a threat to public safety from an animal regulated under this chapter.

Effective: 03/28/2013
R.C. 119.032 review dates: 01/20/2016
Promulgated Under: 119.03
Statutory Authority: 904.03
Rule Amplifies: 904.03 , 904.04
Prior Effective Dates: 01/20/2011

901:12-1-02 Inhalant agents.

Carbon dioxide (CO2):

(A) Compressed carbon dioxide (CO2) gas in cylinders is the only allowed source of carbon dioxide.

(B) Gas concentration must be maintained for at least one minute after death.

(C) Carbon dioxide is the only chemical to be used for euthanasia of animals intended for human or animal consumption.

Effective: 01/20/2011
R.C. 119.032 review dates: 01/20/2016
Promulgated Under: 119.03
Statutory Authority: 904.03
Rule Amplifies: 904.03 , 904.04

901:12-1-03 Injectable euthanasia agents.

All injectable agents, including all barbiturate derivatives, must be used by or under the direct supervision of a licensed veterinarian.

Effective: 01/20/2011
R.C. 119.032 review dates: 01/20/2016
Promulgated Under: 119.03
Statutory Authority: 904.03
Rule Amplifies: 904.03 , 904.04

901:12-1-04 Physical methods.

(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.

Effective: 03/28/2013
R.C. 119.032 review dates: 01/20/2016
Promulgated Under: 119.03
Statutory Authority: 904.03
Rule Amplifies: 904.03 , 904.04
Prior Effective Dates: 1/20/2011

901:12-1-05 Acceptable euthanasia methods for specific species.

(A) Equine (horse)

(1) Acceptable euthanasia methods: penetrating captive bolt, gunshot, barbiturates.

(2) Sites for physical methods:

(a) Frontal - the gun or penetrating captive bolt is directed at the point of the intersection of imaginary diagonal lines taken from the outer corner of the eye to the top of the opposite ear.

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(b) Temporal (side) - the gun is directed at a ninety degree angle to the head at a point midway between the eye and the base of the ear.

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(B) Poultry

Acceptable euthanasia methods:

(1) Poultry (laying hens, turkeys, chicks, poults, and broilers) - carbon dioxide (CO2), cervical dislocation, gunshot, blunt force trauma, decapitation, nonpenetrating captive bolt, electrocution, water based foam, and barbiturates.

(2) Maceration may be used for one day old chicks and poults, and for pipped and embryonated eggs. Delivery to the macerator must occur in a way and at a rate that prevents a backlog at the point of entry into the macerator; and without causing injury, suffocation, or avoidable distress before maceration.

(3) Blunt force trauma is acceptable only for turkeys weighing greater than or equal to fifteen pounds.

(4) Gunshot for free-range poultry only.

(5) Foam is only acceptable for mass euthanasia.

(C) Porcine (swine)

(1) Acceptable euthanasia methods:

(a) Pigs weighing more than seventy pounds: penetrating captive bolt, gunshot, and barbiturates.

(b) Pigs weighing greater than twelve pounds and up to seventy pounds: penetrating captive bolt, gunshot, carbon dioxide (CO2), and barbiturates.

(c) Pigs weighing less than or equal to twelve pounds: carbon dioxide (CO2), nonpenetrating captive bolt, blunt force trauma, barbiturates.

(d) Pigs weighing equal to or greater than ten pounds: electrocution.

(2) Sites for the physical method:

(a) Frontal - the gun or penetrating captive bolt is directed at middle of the head and one inch above the level of the eyes aiming at the spine.

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(b) Temporal (side) - the gun is directed at a ninety degree angle to the side of the head at a point midway between the eye and the base of the ear.

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(c) Behind the ear - the gun is directed from behind the ear diagonally toward the opposite eye.

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(3) Electrocution

(a) For one-step electrocution, a minimum of one hundred ten volts that produces a minimum of 0.5 amps for pigs weighing equal to or greater than ten pounds and up to thirty five pounds is required. For pigs weighing greater than thirty five pounds, a minimum of two hundred twenty volts that produces a minimum of 1.3 amps is required.

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(b) For 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.

(D) Bovine (cattle)

(1) Acceptable euthanasia methods: penetrating captive bolt, gunshot, and barbiturates.

(2) Sites for physical methods:

(a) Frontal - the gun or penetrating captive bolt is directed at the point of intersection of imaginary diagonal lines from the outside corner of the eye to the base of the opposite horn or to a point just above the opposite ear aiming at the spine.

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(b) Temporal (side) - the gun is directed at a ninety degree angle to the side of the head at a point midway between the eye and the base of the ear.

image: oh/admin/2014/901$12-1-05_ph_ff_a_ru_20130318_1405-12.jpg

(c) Poll method - the gun is directed at a point just behind the poll aiming at the muzzle.

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(E) Caprine (goat) and ovine (sheep)

(1) Acceptable euthanasia methods: penetrating captive bolt, gunshot, carbon dioxide (CO2), and barbiturates.

(2) Nonpenetrating captive bolt and blunt force trauma may be used on young animals less than twelve pounds.

(3) Sites for physical methods:

(a) Hornless and horned sheep - for the poll method the gun or penetrating captive bolt is directed at a point just behind the poll and aimed in the direction of the of the back of the throat.

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(b) Hornless and hornded sheep and goats - for the frontal method the gun or penetrating captive bolt is directed at the middle of the forehead just above the level of the eyes and aiming at the spine.

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(c) All goats - for the poll method the gunshot or penetrating captive bolt is directed at a point just behind the poll and aimed at the lower part of the chin.

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(F) Alpaca and llama

(1) Acceptable euthanasia methods: penetrating captive bolt, gunshot, and barbiturates.

(2) Site for physical method:

(a) Frontal - the gunshot or penetrating captive bolt is directed at the point of intersection of imaginary diagonal lines from the inside corner to the eye to the base of the opposite ear aiming at the spine.

(b) Poll method - the gunshot or penetrating captive bolt is directed at a point just behind the poll and aimed in the direction of the back of the throat.

image: oh/admin/2014/901$12-1-05_ph_ff_a_ru_20130318_1405-21.jpg

Effective: 03/28/2013
R.C. 119.032 review dates: 01/20/2016
Promulgated Under: 119.03
Statutory Authority: 904.03
Rule Amplifies: 904.03 , 904.04
Prior Effective Dates: 1/20/2011

901:12-1-06 Civil penalties.

Responsible parties that violate any part of this chapter are subject to the penalties specified in rule 901:12-2 of the Administrative Code. Penalties are assessed based on the classification of the violation as major or minor as defined in rule 901:12-2-1 of the Administrative Code.

Effective: 01/20/2011
R.C. 119.032 review dates: 01/20/2016
Promulgated Under: 119.03
Statutory Authority: 904.03
Rule Amplifies: 904.03 , 904.04