From a technical or scientific point of view an animal gas chamber is quite interesting. From a moral point of view it is a horror. Well, here is a picture of one. Don’t worry, there are no cats inside it. There won’t ever be cats inside an animal gas chamber in Mississippi again.
The last one was at the Lucedale City Shelter. The council decided to stop killing shelter animals in gas chambers and decided to do the humane thing and kill them with lethal injections instead. They are still killing cats and dogs by the truckload, though.
It looks a bit like a giant microwave – easy clean. It has to be because cats become terrified and defecate and vomit all over the chamber when being gassed to death.
“..During this process the animals are put into a small box with many other animals (sometimes up to 30. The gas is turned on they are scared and cramped as this gas fills their lungs it starts burning their insides and eyes. They then begin to panic and cry for help as they bleed from their cavities, vomit and defecate all over (literally) and finally after enduring this for several minutes they take their last breath… As all of this is going on they are usually fully conscious.” (Olga’s email to me – thank you Olga)
So, is this progress? Yes, in a small way it is. Just killing cats in a nicer way is progress, isn’t it?
Wouldn’t it be nice, though, if we didn’t have to mass slaughter cats and dogs at all? Dream on. Gas chambers are something from the dark ages, almost. They are cheap and that is why they have existed until now in Mississippi.
It is probably more expensive to kill cats by lethal injection than it is to save and rehome them, or what about comparing the cost to educating people how to be better cat caretakers? Maybe that would be cheaper too. I don’t know.
Sometimes cats survive and they go back into the chamber. As I understand it, the gas used is either carbon dioxide or carbon monoxide.
Carbon dioxide – CO2 – kills because it causes a build up of carbon dioxide in the blood. As it is a waste product of the body, a build up poisons the cat.
Carbon monoxide – CO – prevents the blood carrying oxygen around the body. The brain is starved of oxygen eventually killing the cat.