Putting An Animal To Sleep

Putting An Animal To Sleep

Dear Paul,

I was just wondering what our religion says about putting animals down if they are in pain. My family has a pet rabbit which is getting very old, has a broken foot, and is basically in a lot of pain. It makes me sad to see her like that, but I’m not so sure about putting her down either.

Dear Friend,

I am happy to inform you that this issue is actually addressed in the Catechism of the Catholic Church, in sections 2415-2418, and I would encourage you to read those sections in their entirely.  However, I would like to specifically quote section 2418 for you right now –

“It is contrary to human dignity to cause animals to suffer or die needlessly. It is likewise unworthy to spend money on them that should as a priority go to the relief of human misery. One can love animals; one should not direct to them the affection due only to persons.”

In light of the teaching of the Catechism, and in light of basic human kindness, I do not think you would be doing anything contrary to what our church teaches if you put your pet rabbit who is in so much pain to sleep. I think it might even be a kind and loving gesture.

I know that the loss of a pet can be an extremely heartbreaking situation.
You are in my prayers as you struggle with this sad situation.

God Bless,

Paul Masek
Coordinator of the REAP Team

No Comments

Post a Comment