A firstborn donkey must be redeemed by giving a lamb or goat kid to a kohen. If the owner of the donkey doesn't redeem it, the donkey must be decapitated with an ax and buried.
Rashi says that this is a punishment: By refusing to perform pidyon peter chamor, the owner caused a loss to the kohen, and incurs a loss himself.
But it's also similar to chalitza: the phrasing is "if he doesn't want to". And there's no problem choosing chalitza over yibbum: some say it's more important because nowadays people can't have proper Kavana when doing Yibbum, and in practice Ashkenazim almost always do chalitza.
So, lechatchila, can the owner of the donkey choose to break the donkey's neck rather than redeem it?