Shooting cats as a form of euthanasia?

This is a discussion about whether shooting cats as a type of euthanasia is humane or inhumane. Why am I discussing it? Because a lot of people shoot a lot of cats, primarily feral cats but sometimes domestic cats and stray cats. These are the world’s shooters. Most of them are in Australia (Oz). That’s where they shoot feral cats and where they don’t believe in TNR and dealing with feral cats humanely. They also shoot hundreds of thousands (at least) of kangaroos at night mainly.

I can remember a cat hater and ornithologist, Woodsman001 who lives in Galveston, USA (Jim Stevenson) about whom I wrote many articles. How can I forget him? He likes to take pot shots at feral cats with a .22 calibre rifle because they threaten waders (plovers) in his neck of the woods.

Under normal circumstances, is it possible to 'euthanize a feral cat with a .22 rifle?
Under normal circumstances, is it possible to ‘euthanize a feral cat with a .22 rifle?
Two useful tags. Click either to see the articles: Toxic to cats | Dangers to cats

And feral cats shooters claim that they kill cats humanely. Well, some of them do while others don’t give a damn whether it’s humane or inhumane.

So how do you ‘euthanise’ a cat with a bullet? Remember the word ‘euthanize’ means to kill painlessly and therefore humanely. And it does not apply to killing healthy animals but sick and dying animals. ‘Euthanasia’ is an abused, generic term but it often means plain old killing.

I’m taking my lead from an article on the Internet titled “Shooting as Euthanasia” from the website ‘Internet Center for Wildlife Damage Management’. The opening sentence is, “Shooting can be the most painless and is sometimes the only available method to humanely dispose of an animal”.

This is how they state you’ve got to do it in order that the animal doesn’t feel pain,

  • When using a .22 calibre long rifle mushroom shell or a .410 shotgun slugs or pellets, you place the muzzle of the gun 1.5-2.0 inches from the animal’s brain.
  • When using a .308 rifle the gun muzzle should be 38-78 inches from the animal’s brain and the same applies for other larger firearms.
  • The bullet should pass to the brain towards the spine. I’ve taken the liberty of using the article’s illustration which you can see below.
  • As you can see the bullet is projected into the brain and then down the spine in what appears to be a dead center shot.
Shooting animals humanely?? Image as per the credit in the image.

So, what’s the point of that detailed description? This is the point: the only way going to kill a feral cat humanely by this method is if you are right up to the cat, in close proximity to him or her. This does not happen. It probably can’t happen because the cat will be too frightened. And, lastly, feral cats users simply take pot shots at a distance. They certainly are not complying with the above precision of method.

Often shooters can’t distinguish between a feral and non-feral cat because they are too far away.

Therefore, any all shooters of feral cats are not euthanising their victims. They are killing them and causing excruciating pain before they die. Let’s not pull any punches on that. Let’s face the reality of it.

I discussed this topic years and years ago in an argument with people like Woodsman0001 when he claimed that he was euthanising cats which in fact was complete baloney as I have illustrated in this article.

You can’t humanely euthanise feral cats with a rifle or a handgun. And if you do get up close to a cat and blow their brains out, you’re going to be splattered with those brains and body fluids. Be prepared for that. Or perhaps you’d rather poison the cat so that they die slowly and in agony.

Let’s try and be humane towards feral cats because humans put them there in the first place. They are the victims of human carelessness and now, through the actions of immoral people, they are victims of human cruelty.

Below are some articles on euthanasia.


Do domestic cats feel betrayed for an instant when you instruct a veterinarian to euthanise them?

The question is philosophical. When you decide to take your cat companion to a veterinarian to have them euthanized because ...
Is euthanising a healthy cat cruel?

Is euthanizing a healthy cat cruel?

Let's first define the word 'cruel'. It means "wilfully causing pain or suffering to others, or feeling no concern about ...
Assisted dying is good for pet cats

Assisted dying of people is good for pets

First the definition of assisted dying. Let's be clear it applies to humans even though we do the same thing ...
The British government considered killing all domestic cats in the UK during Covid

British government briefly considered ordering all domestic cats to be killed

Cast your mind back to the Covid-19 pandemic which incidentally has not entirely finished. People are still dying of it ...

Please search using the search box at the top of the site. You are bound to find what you are looking for.

Useful tag. Click to see the articles: Cat behavior

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