Animal Abuse - Animal Testing
He was running and playing in the yard when a stranger came along. The stranger approached him and grabbed him. He was surprised but the stranger held him tight and he couldn't get loose. He was thrust into a van with no escape. Oh he cried but no one could hear. Suddenly the stranger appeared again and took him from the van. He thought things might be okay but then he was put in a cage. The cage had no solid floor and the wire hurt his feet. He cried again but no one cared. Soon a lady came and gave him a needle. He could feel the heat of the liquid coursing through his veins.
As it traveled through his body he began to itch. He couldn't really scratch because the itch was everywhere. When the itch reached his throat he felt as if his throat was closing up. Within minutes he was dead.
He was a little dog taken from his owner and used for research or so they say.
Here I am again, writing about a subject that burns a hole in my heart. Its called animal testing, animal experimentation or animal research but it all boils down to the same thing. This testing ranges from drug and developmental biology to cutting up or dissecting animals to further research for humans.
Something new? Not nearly. As far back as the 1600s man has been using animals for his own benefit. They are used for research and experiments. While there are many pros and cons the question remains, is it humane? Are animals that anatomically aligned with humans? Do animals suffer? Are their lives wasted? Over twenty-six million animals are used in research each year. Admittedly many of them are mice or rats but where do we draw the line, don't mice or rats suffer? They are still animals.
I intend here though to focus on dogs. Yes, they are still used in research.
"YOU COULD ALSO SAY THAT YOU COULDN'T HAVE SETTLED THE SOUTH WITHOUT SLAVERY. WOULD YOU STILL DO IT THAT WAY TODAY? JUST BECAUSE SOMETHING SEEMED ACCEPTABLE AT THE TIME IS NOT TO SAY THAT WE SHOULD DO IT IN OUR TIME."
From the American Association for Laboratory Animal Science
What assurances exist that stolen or lost pets are not used in research?
While some research requires that dogs and cats are used, the vast majority of laboratory animals are rodents specifically bred for research. Nearly half of the dogs and cats needed for research are also bred for that purpose. Since state laws and local policies prevent many animal pounds and shelters from providing dogs and cats to research facilities, animal dealers are the primary source for the other half of the animals scientists require. These dealers must be licensed by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) and must adhere to Animal Welfare Act standards of care. Both dealers and research facilities can obtain dogs and cats only from specified sources and must comply with detailed record-keeping and waiting-period requirements. In addition, USDA conducts unannounced inspections of dealers and research facilities for compliance to help ensure research animals are not missing pets.
The "Purchase" of Dogs
Dogs are often purchased for testing. The purchase is sad enough in itself, dogs that are homeless or living in shelters soon to be destroyed but also dogs like the one I started this hub with. Animal protection groups have certainly decreased the dog snatching of old and researches claim their procurement of dogs is on the up and up but .... that means abandoned dogs, dogs in the pound...Thirty-six states legally allow shelter or stray dogs to be used for animal testing. Further, research facilities pay up to $2,000 for a dog and $1,000 for a cat, quite an incentive to sell some poor animal.
In 1990 the Animal Welfare Act was amended to prohibit the use of stolen pets in research. Proof of purchase or ownership had to be provided when submitting a dog for research.
I have yet to see the law (or Act) that isn't broken. I would hope most reputable research facilities would follow the law (which by the way, is the legal way to kill dogs) but there is no guarantee. There are dogs now procured from "Class B" dealers. These dealers buy (or snatch) dogs and hold them for a few days before selling them to be used for experiments.
There is no "legal" way around this in my mind. Did you know there are also dogs that are bred for research? These dogs never see the light of day, some never leave their cage! Among the most popular are beagles. They're small, easy to handle, and a good model of human's biology.
Abuse in Animal Testing
Beyond the obvious horrors, in my research I found that some labs remove the dogs' vocal cords so the barking doesn't bother the technicians. There has been further research by an LA journalist that states there are also facilities where the dogs are beat and kicked.
Human diseases are recreated in the test animals. This is done through invasive surgery, burns, force feeding, food, water, and social deprivation, implanting electrodes in intestines, prolonged restraint, to name a few.
Did you know that the anti-cruelty laws of many states do not include research animals?
Do you think animal testing should be stopped?
What's to be Done About Animal Testing?
Through extensive M.R.I. testing on non-sedated dogs (dogs that were trained to allow the M.R.I.) one Gregory Berns, Professor of Neuroscience and author of "How Dogs Love Us: A Neuroscientist and His Adopted Dog Decode the Canine Brain.” stated that this testing showed that dogs, and probably other animals, seem to have emotions. He said this testing showed that dogs may have feelings equal to that of a human child.
Here are some examples of what you can do to help stop animal testing:
- PETA (People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals) runs by donations, any amount will make a difference.
- Stop buying products that use animals to test their products.
- Tell others about the horrors of animal testing.
- Go to http://pcrm.org/articles/help-convince-congress-to-reform-chemical-testing to receive the latest information about the Physicians Committee’s work to reform toxicity testing.
- The five most active organizations fighting to stop animal testing are; PETA, Physicians Committee For Responsible Medicine, European Coalition to End Animal Experiments, and the Center for Alternatives to Animal Testing .... visit any of their websites.
The time has come to end the cruelty. Anything we can do whether it is signing a petition or posting information on our Facebook page, is another step in the right direction.
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