Posted by Barry D. Friedman


If you can stand it, look at what happens to animals in laboratories at the University of Florida.  (Credit: .)






More photos appear on the Web page at .




Comments from people who care about these laboratory animals appear on the Web page at .




See “University of Florida:  Criminalizing Transparency,” at





      "It turns out that the vast percentage of animal experimentation has not benefited human health or animal health.  And there is a whole body of research growing into ways of conducting medical experimentation, pharmaceutical testing, without using any live animals.  When it comes to chimpanzees--because they're so like us, because their DNA differs from ours by only just over one percent, because you could have a blood transfusion from a chimp if you match the blood groups, because the immune system is so like ours that they can catch or be infected with all known human diseases, because the brain is so like ours that it's just almost the same but a bit smaller--they have been used as guinea pigs, to learn about diseases which otherwise are unique to us.  Very little of that research has actually led to results that have benefited us."

-- Jane Goodall, interviewed by the Academy of Achievement.  See the entire compelling interview at .


     ". . . Animals (a term I will use to encompass not only mammals but also birds, fish, reptiles, and insects) are too deeply involved in the political sphere--as subjects of regulation, members of families and communities, and even workers--to be treated as mere undifferentiated, nonsentient, inanimate things.  They are best understood as neither human persons nor mere things but fellow creatures, co-inhabitants of our ecological and social spaces.  They form a wildly diverse set, differing among themselves in terms of physical, emotional, intellectual, social, and, accordingly, moral characteristics.  Our laws and practices must attend to those differences, as well as their similarities to and differences from humans. . . .

     "Animals may be guided more by instinct than by reason, but they still have ways of dwelling intelligently in the world.  Indeed, aspects of that freedom are shared by humans; humans, too, may act according to habit, emotion, and other nonrational drives in socially valued ways.  This sort of behavior is also included in our liberal conception of a life free from domination.  I would suggest, then, that there is nothing inconsistent or illiberal about including animal liberty among our public values. . . .

     "[Alice] Walker develops [an] argument in her short essay, `Am I Blue.'  Blue is the name of [a] horse owned by a neighbor and pastured near Walker's house.  As she became acquainted with the horse, she discovered to her delight that she had no trouble communicating with him.  She says, `I was shocked that I had forgotten that human animals and nonhuman animals can communicate quite well; if we are brought up around animals as children we take this for granted.  By the time we are adults we no longer remember.'  The animals don't stop expressing themselves, of course; it is just that adults learn to ignore them.  Walker suggests that we are able to learn this kind of indifference or deafness because we have power over them; we don't have to listen to them.  In other words, animals' `inability' to communicate with us is not a natural fact; it is an artifact of our domination over them."

-- Kimberly K. Smith, Governing Animals:  Animal Welfare and the Liberal State (New York:  Oxford University Press, 2012), pp. xiv, xxii-xxiii, 114


"Until one has loved an animal, a part of one's soul remains unawakened." -- Anatole France (1844-1924), French author and journalist


See “Interview with Nick Jukes, Coördinator of InterNICHE,” at

See “Dr. Martin Ashby on animal experimentation,” at .


From the Web site of the University of Georgia's S.O.S. ("Speak Out for Species") organization at


Using animals for medical experimentation, product testing, and education is a controversial subject that often leads to heated debate.  While the issues are complex, the suffering involved in animal experimentation is painfully obvious.

Today, tens of millions of animals are used each year in federally and privately funded experiments.  An estimated 90 percent of all animals used in research are rats and mice, though many other species are also used, including guinea pigs, dogs, cats, rabbits, nonhuman primates, and farm animals.

The majority of state animal cruelty laws in the U.S. specifically exclude animals used in experiments. The Animal Welfare Act (AWA) is the only federal law to require basic standards of care, housing, and treatment of laboratory animals.  However, the AWA excludes birds, mice, and rats bred for use in research, who represent approximately 95 percent of animals used in experiments.  Like all animals, these mice and rats share the capacity to suffer fear and pain.

Many animal advocates oppose animal experimentation (vivisection) on ethical grounds, believing that it is morally wrong to harm one species in hopes of benefiting another.  Beyond this ethical position, there are serious scientific and health issues involved as well.  Animal experimentation has led us down countless scientific dead ends, while detracting attention and funds from more applicable scientific techniques.  In reality, animal research never guarantees that medications and other products will be safe and effective for humans.  All drugs that have been pulled off the market because they caused severe illness or death in human patients were previously tested on other animals.

The practice of animal experimentation and testing continues not because it is the most accurate or reliable means of research, but rather because of tradition, peer pressure, and enormous promotion from those with strong vested interests.

Check out these sites for more information…

  • The Scientific Argument Against Animal Experimentation
    Appalled by the cruelty of animal experimentation, many people object to the practice on ethical grounds.  Yet there is another compelling reason to stop animal experimentation: the use of animals as models for humans in biomedical research is hopelessly flawed and has often worked to the detriment of human health.
  • Where Is the Evidence that Animal Research Benefits Humans?
    British Medical Journal, Volume 328, pp. 514–517, February 28, 2004
    Clinicians and the public often consider it axiomatic that animal research has contributed to the treatment of human disease, yet little evidence is available to support this view.
  • Why Scientists Defend Animal Research
    Why do researchers continue to conduct and defend animal experiments in light of insurmountable evidence, even from within the scientific community, that it provides meaningless results?  The answers are many and varied, but they all lead down the same path:  money.
  • Animals in Product Testing
    Every year, thousands of new cosmetic, personal care and household products are introduced into the marketplace.  Virtually all of them have been animal-tested at various stages of their development ... leaving millions of animals mutilated, burned, poisoned, and gassed in outmoded and unnecessary tests.
  • Animals in Education
    Millions of animals are dissected or killed each year in schools and universities.  Cats, frogs, fetal pigs, grasshoppers, mink, earthworms, rats, mice, dogs, pigeons, and turtles are just some of the species used.  Many animals are subjected to cruelty and suffering in the process of becoming "dissection specimens".


The development of non-animal alternatives in research and testing has grown dramatically in the past 20 years and is widely recognized as a legitimate and important area of basic and applied scientific investigation.  The use of alternative techniques leads not only to more reliable scientific conclusions, but also to a more humane approach that, in many cases, can replace live animal use completely.  The three categories of alternative techniques in research and testing are commonly known as the "Three R's" — reduction, refinement, and replacement.

  • Research Alternatives
    Every day, scientists in laboratories around the world conduct important scientific research utilizing methods that do not involve animal experiments in any way.

  • Testing Alternatives
    Before releasing a product on the market, manufacturers must establish the parameters of its safety to those who will come into contact with it.  However, there are many ways to test a substance's potential harmful effects without exposing it to a living animal.

  • Information and Resources on Alternatives to Animal Testing
    El Paso County, Colo., After School Care Programs teacher Joan Wilkinson and her students, including Andrea, recommend this list of Web pages that recommend alternatives to animal testing in the evaluation of cosmetic fragrances.

  • Animalearn
    Animalearn is dedicated to assisting educators and students find non-animal methods to teach and learn science-related subjects.
  • Johns Hopkins University — Center for Alternatives to Animal Testing
    Working with scientists to find new methods to replace the use of laboratory animals in experiments, reduce the number of animals tested, and refine necessary tests to eliminate pain and distress.
  • Altweb — Alternatives to Animal Testing
    An international clearinghouse of resources, information, & news on alternatives.


You can use your power as an informed consumer to help end the use of animals in product testing.  By selecting only cruelty-free products, you'll be making a powerful statement about your beliefs to the animal experimentation industry.

Today hundreds of companies conduct no animal testing, and dozens more include no animal ingredients.  Stores are putting more of these items on their shelves.  Every time you purchase an animal friendly product, you support animal friendly companies.

Determining whether a product is tested on animals is easy!  Look for the Leaping Bunny, an internationally recognized logo for products that have not been tested on animals at any stage of development.  Buying products with the Leaping Bunny logo takes the guesswork out of shopping and guarantees cruelty-free products you can feel good about using.  Use your dollars to send a strong message that animal testing is outdated and unnecessary!


The Coalition for Consumer Information on Cosmetics (creators of the Leaping Bunny standard) provide a handy online Shopping Guide to products not tested on animals, including cosmetics, personal care and household products.


Note:  The Web site of VetTechnicians ( ) may contain useful contact information.  Please use this source selectively; for example, I do not sponsor contacts with the animal- and dairy-industry operatives that may be listed.


Information for pet owners about saving money on pet care:
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Can't we human beings do better than this?  The laboratory animals need the active effort of every person who has ever been touched emotionally by an animal to put a stop to the torture and killing in research laboratories.  Are you motivated to help these defenseless animals?  Please write to me at .


Personal disclaimer:  This page is not a publication of the University of North Georgia and UNG has not edited or examined the content of the page.  The author of the page is solely responsible for the content.

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Last updated on
August 6, 2018, by Barry D. Friedman.