World Week for Animals in Laboratories

Posted by Mark Hawthorne, ALDF Guest Blogger on April 21, 2014

They are hidden from view, but animals in labs suffer by the millions each year, and we can all do something about it. This week is World Week for Animals in Laboratories. Built around World Day for Animals in Laboratories (April 24), this is an international movement of protests, rallies, demonstrations, marches, candlelight vigils, and media events to raise awareness about animal testing. An estimated 100 million animals suffer in laboratory research—with little to no regulatory oversight. Legal requirements for painkillers are often overridden by claiming “scientific necessity” and 95% of these animals are unprotected by the federal Animal Welfare Act. See ALDF’s “Animal Testing and the Law.”

pirka-bunny-article-image-500px

Pirka is a rescued rabbit, similar to those who live in laboratories.

Animals in laboratories are beaten, burned, and blinded. They are nailed down, tied up, and sliced open. They are starved, suffocated, shaken, and shot. Their organs are pulverized, their limbs are severed, their bodies are irradiated, and their spirits are broken. They are forced to drink alcohol, inhale tobacco smoke, and consume a variety of highly dangerous narcotics, including heroin. Name a modern disease, and they’ve been infected with it. Imagine a torment, and they’ve suffered it.

Whether it’s called animal testing, animal research, animal studies, animal experimentation, or vivisection, the exploitation of animals in labs occurs throughout the world over three broad categories:

  1. In biomedical research, by far the largest use, animals are used as models of people to study human health, disease, and injury. Examples of study targets include clues to the mechanisms of heart conditions and potential drugs to treat illness. This category also includes testing drugs to determine their toxicity (how poisonous they are). Research is generally a precursor to clinical trials using humans.
  2. In product testing, scientists conduct toxicity tests on animals to discover how cleansers, food additives, pesticides, cosmetics, tobacco, and a broad assortment of industrial and consumer goods might affect human beings and the environment. For example, typical tests measure the level of skin irritancy and eye tissue damage a substance causes.
  3. In education, animals are used in training medical, veterinary, and other health professionals or in teaching basic biology, such as anatomy. Dissecting frogs in high school is a common example most of us are probably familiar with.

brochure-web2The good news is that alternatives to animal-based models are making headway and show great promise for one day replacing animals altogether. These include In vitro (“in glass”) studies on human cells and tissues; computer modeling; machines that screen chemicals for toxicity; clinical research, which entails observing and analyzing illnesses in human patients; and a humane alternative for HIV/AIDS research called the Modular Immune In vitro Construct (MIMIC), which uses human cells to create a surrogate human immune system. Unfortunately, fully implementing these compassionate options will be a long process. In the meantime, please speak out for animals in labs this week. Here are some things you can do:

  • Never purchase products tested on animals. Read labels and look for language that indicates the product is free of animal testing. You can also check for the Leaping Bunny logo.
  • Write a letter to the editor of your local paper urging that society abandon animal testing. Although animal testing is currently required before drugs go to market, no U.S. law dictates that animals should be subjected to torture to test the safety of household products. (Even a letter that doesn’t get published is a force for positive change.)
  • Do not donate to charities that test on animals.
  • Become part of an organized event. To find something in your area, simply go to Facebook and type “World Week for Animals in Laboratories” in the search field at the top.
  • Add a message to your voice mail or email signature that speaks up for animals in labs.
  • Download a copy of ALDF’s brochure “Animal Testing and the Law” to learn why animal research is nothing short of legal torture.

Mark Hawthorne is the author of Bleating Hearts: The Hidden World of Animal Suffering and Striking at the Roots: A Practical Guide to Animal Activism (both from Changemakers Books). You’ll find him tweeting @markhawthorne


52 thoughts on “World Week for Animals in Laboratories

  1. lourdes hinnant says:

    Stop animal testing…please.

  2. Joanne says:

    I against testing the monkeys rabbits or other animals so st this right now…, thanks I against animals testings that is not rights that is very very WRONG…. Ban this forever

  3. dianna froncillo says:

    this must stop!!!!

  4. Vicki Vieau says:

    Please stop all animal testing. It is not necessary!

  5. e says:

    HORRIFIC AND NEEDS TO STOP NOW.
    THE TERROR THESE ANIMALS ARE PUT THROUGH IS INHUMANE AND CRUEL..

  6. fiona smith says:

    Please give them some life of love not pain of tests its sick

  7. Justine Smith says:

    Animals are God’s creatures. Not for humans experiments. End this now!!

  8. Pamela Geier says:

    This is a disgusting abuse of human power. I implore you to stop ALL animal testing immediately!

  9. Harriet Kaufman says:

    This is still inhumane, and that will never change. Please end the suffering and find another way of advancing medicine.

  10. Renate says:

    All these cruelties, abuse and torture on animals must stop, it is against Life.
    who has they right to experiment on a living Being, are the law makers living under a rock and where have they studied, looks like in hell, have they not heard about to respect life of all forms of life and give them protection?
    What is happen with our society that they just accept such horrific crimes and even supporting the industry of cruelty. I am so sick of the law makers ignorance and who do not want to change things quick enough if at all.
    I propose to stop all animal abuse, cruelty, torture of any kind and necessary steps must been taken now.
    Open your hearts and love to gods creature, their are here sharing with us our planet for a good reason but not to be tortured.
    This is all to inhuman to have even the words for it.

  11. Tae Turner says:

    Animal testing is beyond cruel.This needs to stop.NOW! Please help the helpless.

  12. Vickie Anderson says:

    You are no better than the murderers,rapists in prison…maybe you should test on those who are on death row…testing on animals is heartless & meaningless.

  13. Corene wickland says:

    Please stop animal testing

  14. Katharine says:

    Testing on animals is simply unnecessary. It’s inhumane, it’s cruel, it’s unethical, and it’s vile what is done to the animals. How would you like to have clorox poured in your eyes, or have your body pinned down as someone pours windex in your nose, your eyes, and on your skin? You spend your day immobilized, in a barren cage, you’d never see the outside or be in the sun. Animals belong outside in the sun, in nature, not locked in a small cage day in and day out being pricked, prodded, neglected, hungry, and alone.

  15. Greice Monteiro says:

    Please, stop ALL animal testing now!

  16. Tina Springer says:

    Please stop the inhumane and unnecessary torture of God’s innocent, helpless, voiceless creatures, they deserve love and protection

  17. Joana Videira says:

    Its outrageous that this still is happening in ourdays

  18. Berta Grunaum says:

    Stop animal abuse

  19. Kathy Vorderbruggen says:

    You are cruel and inhumane.. there must be better ways to test. Prisoners are treated better. Use the worst of the worst criminals for testing. STOTESTING ON INNOCENT ANIMALS!!!! THEY HAVE RIGHTS TOO!!!

  20. Gina Capitelli says:

    Lab testing on animals is inhumane. They are living beings. They are suffering for no purpose. The people who are “hands on” in this torture, can’t be human. How can such vile “tests” be inflicted on innocent animals when it is not necessary? IT MUST STOP NOW.

  21. Debbie Richardson says:

    Barbaric

  22. Nancy says:

    Animal testing needs to stop now!

  23. gail haas says:

    please stop testing on animals

  24. Anne Haggerty says:

    This is inhumane and disgusting to all who know and love animals. We are not better than they are. They give no advised consent and are unable to do so, therefore, this MUST stop now.

  25. Alicia says:

    Cruelty has become human daily bread. This needs to stop..

  26. Caroline Forrester says:

    Not nexessary and inhumane. Please please stop.

  27. Debra Harrington says:

    Surely you’re smart enough to think of a better solution than one so inhumane and barbaric as testing on live animals.

  28. Bere pos says:

    Give them the instinct to live is his right

  29. Valerie Margaret Cooper says:

    I am against all cruelty to all animals. They are our little brothers and sisters. Humans have no right to exploit them. That is not what God intended. He is watching those evil ones and justice will prevail.

  30. Karenna Love says:

    Animal Testing is cruel and unnecessary, outdated and barbaric. There are alternative methods in this modern day and time and animals should no longer be used period.

  31. Lisa Veloz says:

    This must STOP now!

  32. Kathy says:

    Stop this cruel and inhumane testing.

  33. Elaine Dungan says:

    Please stop Animal testing. It’s so cruel. Animals have feelings just like us.

  34. Christine says:

    This animal abuse MUST STOP. Animal cruelty is punishable by law. What you are doing is disgusting and discraceful. You MUST find other resources for testing products. Sadly, these poor abused animals can’t communicate how much pain they are suffering. Shame on you!!

  35. Cindy Haynes says:

    Please stop. This is so inhumane and not necessary.

  36. Pamela says:

    Barbaric!! Please We need to stop All Animal Testing

  37. Julie Greenwalt says:

    Cruel and barbaric animal testing is unnecessary! Humans and animals are completely different so the testing is inaccurate & a horrible waste of suffering animals!

  38. Juanita Bowen says:

    animal testing is unnecessary! stop testing!

  39. Elaine Somers says:

    Please stop ALL animal testing! Many tests are All ready documented, but the torture continues to helpless, voiceless defenseless animals.
    Many products are vain and just NOT necessary. Why would we be so cruel, in humane?
    Please, Please stop!!
    Thank you.
    Elaine Somers
    Rockport, MA

  40. Carole Maggiori@yahoo.fr says:

    When these cruelty will be over ? Too much pain, so sad to see these tortured and murders in through the world. We are powerless against these atrocities, we are here, right to petition, written emotions, donate, but can not do more to stop this……That’s enough now, too many years pasted…..

  41. Ashamed says:

    I am horrified to know that humans have caused, and continue to cause, so much terrible suffering to our fellow creatures.

  42. Viviana carcache says:

    Please please please stop that animal abuse , cruelty , it’s awful awful , it’s necessary to do something , that images and what they do to the dogs is horrible, it’s horrendous to think how capable humans are to cause pain to a someone who cannot defense themselves, and I don’t buy the idea that because ” they are poor and they need the money”, I would prefer to be so poor than do something cruel to someone”;
    Boycott the tourist industry there and make it clear why”!, that is completely wrong what they do to a living creature !
    They need to learn to respect animals , or we the people who got their voices , we will let the abusers know what is right!

  43. Linda says:

    This horrible evil needs to stop! There are other ways to test products without hurting these sweet, loving, defenseless animals. They have done nothing wrong to deserve this kind of treatment! How can people be so cold, heartless and uncaring? I’ll never understand this. Animals have all the same emotions and feelings that we do. This is absolutely unacceptable! How is it that animal abuse is a felony, but it’s perfectly alright to torture these poor animals in labs? Why doesn’t the law apply to these people? We all need to ban together and stop buying products that have been tested on animals. I don’t know how those people sleep at night. Shame on all of them!

  44. Janice says:

    Please stop using animals for testing. It just is not right. Who are we to treat God’s creature in this manner.

  45. Amanda Rice says:

    Animals are innocent creatures & they are NOT here for people to hurt/abuse/neglect. Animal Research is so incredibly inhumane, unnecessary & downright wrong & evil. Stop the pain & suffering of Animals!!!

  46. Elda says:

    Animal testing must stop alltogether. It is a primitive, doubtful in terms of scientific reliability and a shame for all mankind.

  47. Dee Gee says:

    OMG! Help the helpless!!! Poor critters, no more animal experiments for GRANT money!!! Beyond evil!!!

  48. Sue says:

    Please stop using innocent animals for your research. It’s barbaric and not necessary.

  49. Joyce says:

    No more testing on animals. They are here to be part of a beautiful world just like us. That is what we should work toward.

  50. carlos says:

    Don’t buy the products fom companys that test in animals. Boycott!!!

  51. Steve says:

    Please stop buying products tested on animals..this is down right sick and twisted!

  52. meela says:

    This horrible cruel and inhuman acts must be dropped like a bad habit right now. and Yes pls stop buying products of those barbaric monsters who run tests on animals.