Can You Euthanize Goldfish With Clove Oil?

Goldfish are a fantastic set of aquarium fishes. They are freshwater fish that belong to the family Cyprinidae, and they are mostly kept as aquarium fishes. They are lovely and so entertaining to watch. As much as these fishes are lovable, there are times you might have to get rid of them.

To euthanize Goldfish with clove oil, you should first prepare the clove in water. It is best if you mix the oil with water until it forms a milky emulsion. You can dose the clove at three drops per litre of water if you are dealing with a small fish and 4-6 drops for adult and larger fishes. It would help if you then dipped the fish in the clove oil until it stops breathing.

Euthanize Goldfish With Clove Oil

Of course, it is heartbreaking, but there are times it is inevitable. One of the best ways to offer mercy killing to Goldfish is with the use of clove oil.

In case you are wondering what euthanasia is; Euthanasia is simply the practice of intentionally ending a particular life [human or animal] to relieve them of pain and suffering. There are typically four types of euthanasia, which are passive, active, indirect, and physician-assisted suicide.

Ending the life of Goldfish with clove oil is passive euthanasia, but if you want to do it, make sure you do it correctly. If not done correctly, it can aggravate the pain you intend to relieve.

Why Do You Need To Kill A Goldfish

The concept of euthanasia sounds so strange and weird. Why would you even want to kill a pet you bought because you loved it? It is tough to think that there would be a time you need to kill the fish.

Well, there are a lot of reasons why you might have to end the life of your Goldfish. The reason for euthanasia itself is to relieve pain and suffering, therefore euthanizing your Goldfish can be to protect the fish itself or to protect other members of the tank.

Before I proceed, let us clarify something. Euthanizing Goldfish does not involve any accident on your part. It does not include unhealthy factors like leaving your tank untreated or other carelessness on your part.

One of the primary reasons why you might have to euthanize your Goldfish is to relieve them of suffering from illness or physical pain. If you discover your Goldfish is suffering from a particular pain, you can euthanize them when you have tried all possible treatment strategies.

Likewise, if you operate just one community tank and a particular fish is making the tank, you can get rid of them. Aggressive fish can brutally injure and even kill another tank mate, which is undesirable. So if you don’t have a separate tank that you can keep the aggressive fish, you can kill it in the most compassionate way possible.

Similarly, if one of the members of the tank is critically sick, there are two options. You can either decide to quarantine it in a separate container or get rid of them to prevent the disease from spreading the disease to other members of the tank. We often result in this option only when every other treatment option has proven abortive.

Euthanizing Goldfish With Clove Oil

Euthanasia itself is otherwise known as mercy killing; therefore, it must be carried out in the most peaceful way as possible. The use of clove oil is one of the best ways to euthanize your Goldfish.

The clove oil ideal for euthanizing and American Veterinary Medical Association even recommends it as a compassionate and humane way to kill fish. It works like anesthetics used by most vets. Clove oil works by first putting your Goldfish to sleep before killing them without suffering.

You can make use of clove oil to euthanize Goldfish in four simple steps;

  • Step 1: Capture The Fish

    Of course, the first thing you need to do is to get your fish ready. Get a container and fill it with water similar to that of the aquarium. This is to ensure they don’t notice the change in the environment. Catch the fish and place it inside the container. You have to be gentle with this step as much as possible.

  • Step 2: Mix The Clove Oil With Water

    It is not proper to add your clove oil directly to the water; it simply flows at the surface. You have to mix it in a separate container. Add 4 drops of the clove oil to water in the container. Shake the mixture well till it turns a milky white color. The milky color shows the clove oil is now mixed.

  • Step 3: Add The Clove Oil Mixture

    Gradually add the clove oil mixture into the container where your fish is and stir it with your hand simultaneously. The mixture will first knock out the fish, and it will stop moving. Close examination of the gill region will show that the fish has only gone to sleep and is not yet dead. The fish will, however, continue in this motionless state until it eventually dies off with no pain or suffering.

  • Step 4: Add a stronger dose

    This step is optional, and you only need it if you find your fish is still active after five minutes. Add a few more drops of the clove oil to the container with the fish, stir and wait. Keep increasing the dose until the fish eventually die.


Nobody ever wants to watch their favorite pet die, and it is, however, necessary in some cases. However, like euthanasia, which translates to mercy killing implies, this form of death must be as humane and peaceful as possible. The use of clove oil to euthanize Goldfish is one of the recommended and the most peaceful ways of getting rid of Goldfish.

To make it clear, I am not advocating for euthanasia, and it should be the end resort only in extreme cases. Likewise, you should never be gruesome about it. You should not consider euthanizing your Goldfish if you have any alternative means of dealing with the situation.




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