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Save the Animals – Animal Testing Paper

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Published: Fri, 15 Sep 2017

Melanie Sellner

A poor animal shivers in a cage waiting for the researchers to return and continue testing. Dogs, cats, hamsters, mice, and primates are only a few of the many animals that are tested on daily. Even though some animal testing has been successful most are flawed because animals are too different from humans; therefore it should be stopped.

Libby was a dog rescued from a lab, along with 250 other cats and dogs, that was shut down because of a PETA investigation. She crawled up to people, too scared to stand, the only thing separating her from the others was the number on her ear. She had hookworm, tapeworm, a vaginal infection and her teeth were rotten. The lab where she was rescued from was paid to infest dogs or cats with worms ticks and fleas. Then the animals were force-fed or smeared with chemicals to test products for companions.The PETA investigation showed they kicked, threw and dragged dogs. They lifted puppies by their throats and screamed at the animals. This investigation prompted the lab to fire four people; one was a supervisor, on felony cruelty charges. After her rescue, Libby is happy with her new family, playing tug-o-war and wrestling with the two other dogs the family owns(@peta).

Of the millions of animals that are used in research facilities, the Animal Welfare Act or AWA does not cover rats, mice, fish and birds, which comprise around 95% of the animals used in research(Animal). The AWA-covered 1,134,693 animals used for testing in the fiscal year 2010, which leaves around 25 million other animals that are not covered(Animal). These animals are especially vulnerable to mistreatment and abuse without the protection of the AWA.

The bodily structure, the chemical reactions used to keep cells alive, and cellular differences between animals and people make animals poor models for human beings. Paul Furlong, Professor of Clinical Neuroimaging at Aston University (UK), states that “it’s very hard to create an animal model that even equates closely to what we’re trying to achieve in the human”(Animal).  Thomas Hartung, Professor of Evidence-Based Toxicology at John Hopkins University, argues for alternatives to animal testing because “we are not 70 kg rats”(Animal).

Animal testing . Many animals used in experiments are force fed, forced to inhale, food and water deprivation, prolonged physical restraint, burned or are inflicted with other types wounds to study how they heal. The causing of pain to study its effects and remedies is cruel and inhumane. Killing by carbon dioxide asphyxiation, neck-breaking, decapitation, or other means are some of the ways these poor animals die. One example of cruel testing is the Draize eye test which involves rabbits being forced to keep their eyes open, with clips, for prolonged periods of time and is used by cosmetic companies to test produces. Another commonly used test is the  LD50 (lethal dose 50) test which involves finding out how much of a chemical will kill 50% of the animals being used in the experiment. The US Department of Agriculture (USDA) reported in 2010 that 97,123 animals suffered pain during experiments and were given no anesthesia for relief(Animal).

Jane Goodall is a chimpanzee specialist who has studied them for 50 years; she received a video of an animal testing lab and was horrified by what she saw. Chimps in the wild are close, supportive and have affectionate bonds between family members that last throughout their lives. They have nonverbal communication patterns of posture and touch that are similar to ours, like  kissing, embracing, patting one another, swaggering, wave their fists, tickling and laughing. They even have a sense of humor and a sense of self that sets them apart.

On the other hand chimp in cages, like the young, who lose their mothers may show signs of depression comparable to those of a socially deprived human child. Chimps show a variety of stereotypic stress behaviors, such as rocking, swaying, moving from side to side, and repetitiously banging on the mesh of their cages, the walls or the ceiling. And when researchers come to retrieve a patient the procedure causes extreme panic.

Most researchers couldn’t care less about the animals in many cases. Animals stay in metal cages with no bedding or enrichment activities. Baby chimpanzees wearing diapers, clinging to each other, in their sterile cages. The cages of the adults were small and absolutely bare. There might be one shelf on which a chimpanzee could sit. When the staff, with gloves and masks, showed adult chimpanzees syringes the chimps would shy away and wouldn’t come, when this happened a capture gun was used. The sight of the gun caused panic with all the chimps. When the gun was used, the researchers did nothing to calm the panicked chimps. The chimps in the video were gradually confined to a smaller and smaller space. When researchers would sedate chimpanzees they didn’t care if the chimp was on a perch and would fall. Jane Goodall didn’t see any chimpanzee being given a reward-not even a kind or encouraging word when they did something correct. One researcher put an orange outside the cage where it could not be reached by the chimpanzee who rocked from side to side in depression. Most researchers have a lack of concern for the psychological welfare of the chimpanzees and that needs to change.(Goodall).

Animal research has few successful results, is cruel and should be stopped. Hundreds of millions of animals lives can be saved if animal research is stopped. You can help by buying cruelty-free products or donate to foundations like PETA’s Rescue and Investigations fund to help them continue to investigate cruelty and seek justice for the animal victims.

Works Cited

@peta. “Life After the Laboratory: Libby’s Story.” PETA Life After the Laboratory Libby’s Story Comments. PETA People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, 14 Oct. 2013. Web. 18 Oct. 2016.

“Animal Testing – ProCon.org.” ProConorg Headlines. ProCon.org, 25 May 2016. Web. 18 Oct. 2016.

Goodall, Jane. “Jane Goodall Responds to Undercover Chimpanzee Investigation.” : The Humane Society of the United States. The Humane Society of the United States, 4 Mar. 2009. Web. 19 Oct. 2016.


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