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put down (2)

This page is about the phrasal verb put down (2).

Meaning: to put a sick or injured animal to death, usually by lethal injection

Synonym: put to sleep

For example:

  • put sth down Tottie was very old and very sick, so we told the vet to put her down.

  • put down sth Putting down family pets is one of the most difficult parts of my job as a vet.

  • have sth put down If a horse breaks a leg, sometimes the kindest thing to do is to have it put down.

Note: "Put down" is one of several euphemisms for putting an animal to death. Others are "lay down", "put to sleep" and "put out of its/his/her misery".

Quick Quiz:

If a pet needs to be put down and you can't afford to pay a vet, you should take it to

a. a pet shop

b. a petting zoo

c. an animal shelter

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Contributor: Matt Errey