ANIMALS AND RESEARCH

♏*PHOENIX*♏ - posted on 07/30/2010 ( 23 moms have responded )

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Should animals be used for research?

Im on the fence here, im not an all out animal activist or vegetarian, but I do think the things that are done to animals are so cruel, and yet I feel that It would be even more cruel to do them on humans…

And for those of you who are very much against animal testing..,,,should they then but be done on people waiting on death row??? Would that be humane since they are going to die anyway?


Pain and Distress
The USDA breaks down the number of animals used by the category of pain and distress they experience during the experiments. No Pain, No Drugs (Category C) means that the animals experienced no or only momentary pain and distress. With Pain, With Drugs (Category D) means that the animals were used in experiments that did cause significant pain and distress, but received medication to relieve or treat the pain. With Pain, No Drugs (Category E) means that animals experienced unalleviated pain and distress as part of the experiment. Over 73,000 animals, seven percent of the total, experienced unalleviated pain and distress in 2006.



Sources of animals
There is an entire industry built around supplying animals for research. Class B dealers buy and sell animals solely for research purposes. These dealers obtain animals from auctions, through pound seizure (purchasing animals from pounds or shelters so that they can be used in research), from ‘free to good home’ ads, and through other means that are sometimes questionable. Animals obtained from such ‘random sources,’ who were once members of a family, often suffer from abuse and neglect when placed in dealer facilities devoid of attention and enrichment.

http://www.aavs.org/researchAnimals.html

MOST HELPFUL POSTS

Valerie - posted on 07/31/2010

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As someone who works in the pharmaceutical industry, more specifically in the preclinical testing end of it (i.e. animal testing), I am sorry to inform you that it is absolutely necessary. Not for cosmetics, but for medication.
First of all, I have to correct some information on the initial post, being the source of animals. The animals used in laboratories are bred specifically for that purpose, kept in controled environments and fed better food (free of ash & toxins) than what is commercially available for your pets. Strays and unwanted pets are not ideal test systems because they coud have eaten anything, been exposed to anything, have genetic defects, etc.
The FDA's regulations regarding new drugs requires preclinical testing. The most popular test systems are mice, rats, rabbits, dogs, pigs and monkeys. Each have systems that, although they are not human, respond similarly enough to humans to gain valuable information about a drug's safety.
Among the battery of preclinical tests that must be performed are reproductive studies: animals are given the drug, mated, and then the effects on fertility and the fetus are evaluated. We can't do that on death-row criminals, now can we?
An alarming statistic used by anti-animal testing groups is that very few studies that clear the preclinical stage actually clear the clinical stage (that is, several drugs that show acceptable side effects and toxicity levels in animals are deemed to dangeous, or not as effective as anticipated, after being tested on willing human subjects. A realistic figure is about 1%.) However, a vast majority of experimental compounds fail the preclinical phase. That's human lives saved, right there.
I was once told by a good friend that the work I do is evil.
Ironically he was chewing on a pork chop while he was saving it. The pig he was eating did not save his life; but the pig being tested on downstairs from my desk may one day.
If you ban animal testing, what humans do you think this sick capitalistic world would chose to pump full of compounds? Probably the world's poor.
And just a little side note, while it might be cold comfort to hear, but animals are housed and treated so as to maximize their quality of life. Chew toys, treats, running wheels are provided. There are technicians who have time scheduled to pet and play with the animals. Where I work, someone who mistreats or disrespects an animal is immediately terminated. Even slamming a cage door can get you the axe. Injuries are treated, cagemates are separated when they don't get along, etc.

Valerie - posted on 07/31/2010

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Might be problematic for reproductive toxicity studies, though... that being said I'm pretty sure that prisoners are probably likely to have led lifestyles that affect the overall health of their bodies (drugs use, for eg.), which might produce flawed results... :)

La - posted on 07/31/2010

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I agree with Meghan. Use pedophiles and rapists as guinea pigs. I don't have a problem with animal testing though.

This conversation has been closed to further comments

23 Comments

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Stifler's - posted on 08/01/2010

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Yes and I disagree with testing things on criminals. I did a subject called Drugs in Society and a significant percentage of prisoners in developed countries are users of illicit substances, which would probably interfere with the tests.

Stifler's - posted on 08/01/2010

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I think without animal testing, medicine would be nowhere near as advanced as it is today. No chemotherapy? No anti-biotics? No thanks!

Barbara - posted on 07/31/2010

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Sharon- I don't really know what you are arguing about right now. I think we're all in a basic agreement, frivolous animal testing is bad.
You never really answered my question about factory farming, though, besides to tell me that I can go ahead and eat a rapist. Clever comeback, but I didn't come to this forum for comebacks. Where's the debate?

Valerie - posted on 07/31/2010

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Sharon - I acknowledge that I reiterated some of your comments, and others in posts that preceded mine. I also read 3 posts after your first one against animal testing altogether. I provided some facts since I actually earn my living on this industry, and felt that a little context would do the debate some good.
Senseless animal tests are frowned upon by the FDA, and would do a pharma company no favours in getting their drug to market. Plus, animal studies are super expensive to conduct - they would just never waste their money on morbid curiosity or torture for sport. Universities do a lot of "exploratory" work (some of it very unneccessary) that falls outside the scope of what I am advocating. I hate it, not only because it is abbhorent, but because it casts a negative light on all laboritory animal use.

Sharon - posted on 07/31/2010

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Barbara if you want to eat a rapist - knock yourself out. I'd rather not feast on such fare. I still think many criminals would do well as test subjects. yeah I know the american public cry a river about it though, but its still a thought that brings a smile to my face.

Valerie - you just didn't seem to have read any thing that was posted after the original post, lecturing people on things that had already been stated. It seemed rude to me. So I tossed it back at you.

Since its not sinking in - There is nothing I wouldn't do to save my child. If an animal has to be a test subject, so be it. That is the lesser of two evils. I do abhore senseless, pointless tests. Our UofA recently was busted for stupid things with animals.

Tara - posted on 07/31/2010

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There is no doubt that animal testing for medical reasons is necessary, it would be unlikely that humans would make good test subjects anyhow, too many variables as someone else pointed out.
The fact is that animal rights activists are fine with screaming "ban all animal testing" until one of them has been cured of some horrible illness by a drug that was tested first on non human primates. Or their life is saved because of some knowledge gained through testing. How are we to ever find a cure for things like cancer and AIDS/HIV etc. if we don't test the drugs needed to find a cure? Right now we have animals, we use them and if they are "procured" through strict processes, raised for the use of testing etc. than it isn't any better than factory farming, however it is more necessary and more for our benefit rather than our wants.
Anyone that thinks we should ban all forms of animal testing needs to give their head a shake, honestly what advancements will we ever make? And really if it came down to it would someone rather not live than know they could live based on research done on a dog, cat or pig?
If their child were sick with an incurable disease would they rather the child die than to have researchers searching for a cure using animals as test subjects? Or would they rather they test on their child?
Not nice, not pretty and I'm sure no one likes it, but it is necessary.

Valerie - posted on 07/31/2010

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Meh, Sharon. 4 people felt my post was more helpful than duh. Some in this thread argued against all animal testing, not just cosmetic stuff. The initial post contained information that I felt was incomplete at best.

Barbara - posted on 07/31/2010

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Sharon- So, what about the extreme cruelty to animals at factory farms? That would fit the profile of non essential. Should we start serving rapists and gangbangers at McDonalds because they deserve it more?

It does satisfy my sense of justice to think of experimenting on people who have committed horrible crimes, but I doubt it would really be feasible due to reasons that Valerie stated in her post.

And I don't appreciate your duh-ing. We can have a good debate without rudeness, right?

:)

Sharon - posted on 07/31/2010

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Barbara- years ago I read about a university professor who actually did it. A teacher presented the article, she clipped from a newspaper, she was so outraged, our assignment was to write to our senator and the head of the university about it. Yeah I know its a theoretical thing - duh.

And Valerie - more duh - just about every single person has admitted medical necessity we're protesting non essential crap.

Your average gang banger and crackhead murderer is probably not a good chemical test candidate but there are those moms who killed their kids, your garden variety rapist, drunk drivers - use those assholes. I won't miss them.

LaCi - posted on 07/31/2010

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I think its horrible.



That being said, I see the necessity for medical research.



I'm also a vegetarian, and won't purchase products from companies that use animal testing. I do not require my shampoo to be tested to see at what point 70% of the kittens who used it died. I'd much rather my shampoo contain safe, nontoxic compounds that wouldn't require kitty death dose documentation. The shampoo and kittens are just examples ;) There shouldn't be a need to test the lethal doses of my household products, if there is I don't want it in my house. That's one thing they do, test our products to see at which dosage of the particular chemical 70% of the test subjects die... Which leads me to wonder, if only 69% die is that considered safe?

Meghan - posted on 07/31/2010

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maybe they should start using serial killers and pedophiles for testing...I mean I don't really have an issue with animal testing...but just a thought

Barbara - posted on 07/31/2010

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Sharon- That cat in a box experiment didn't actually happen. It's a physics illustration called "Shroedinger's (sp) cat" meant to illustrate a certain aspect of quantum physics. I can't say I fully understand it, I only know about it due to the fact that my husband studied physics;)

Valerie- As someone who worked for years in another frequently maligned animal related job (exotic animal trainer, like for movies, tv, shows, etc.) I feel your pain. I saw it summed up quite nicely in a book by Barbara Kingsolver recently: "When moral superiority combines with billowing ignorance, they fill up a hot air balloon that's awfully hard not to poke."

Barbara - posted on 07/31/2010

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I think that animal testing is bad, but factory farming is just as bad and probably worse. Those animals are tortured from the moment they are born until they are killed. Even if the kill moment is relatively humane, they have lived their lives in conditions as extremely bad as they can get, just up to the point that they will survive long enough to reach market weight. And this isn't even torture to save human life, it's torture to save a little money.
It just seems like saying we should do away with animal testing is silly if you're still going to pay for animals to be tortured by the million into cheap meat, especially when there is lots of meat for sale that hasn't had a life of horrors, though it is a bit more expensive.

Jessica - posted on 07/31/2010

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Not a fan of animal testing...they don't understand why they are being hurt, just that they are and can't stop it. I'm all for capital punishment, but since so many people are sooo against that, let them be the guinea pigs, that way they are still alive and getting more of a punishment...at least the animals haven't raped and murdered...

Patricia - posted on 07/31/2010

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I don't like it all...they are God's creatures and don't feel we need to test things on animals...maybe a couple of humans...but not animals.

Tara - posted on 07/31/2010

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The laws in place do not protect the animals that are procured through questionable means, this means any stray animal, any used up farm animal etc. can become a testing tool. This disgusts me.

The need for biomedical research is vast. But only few studies on animals every pan out to be true on humans. We are very different than a guinea pig, etc. and testing perfume on the eyes of a rabbit is unnecessary when they can determine the caustic elements used based on chemistry.

Some testing is necessary, unfortunately we do not have the knowledge yet to build a testing model that will mimic the human body.

Without testing on animals we would not have found out about the very lasting and very devastating effects of certain chemical interactions in our human bodies. For instance we would not know the effects of PCB's and other persistent chemicals on our developing fetuses if it weren't for all the tests done on animals to prove the extent of harm done to our endocrine systems etc.

Necessary in the broad scheme of things, but far too many animals are tested and worse "studied" for dumb ass reasons that have no relevance to our potential health as a species.

I also feel that there should be little need for pain with or without drugs. If pain is to be judged they can also do so while a patient is under "conscious sedation" the pain response in the brain is the same as if they are awake, but they do not actually remember the pain or experience it directly.

Lots to debate about, good topic.

:)

edited for typos cause I'm a grammar nazi

Sharon - posted on 07/31/2010

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SOME animal research is absolutely necessary.

SOME is utterly frivolous and disgusting. I get soooooo angry at the stupid things I hear/read about in animal research. Putting a kitten in a sealed (welded shut metal box and then theorizing "is it still there?" wtf?

Putting a kitten on one side with an electrified grid and mother on the other and then zapping the kitten every time the mother tried to get it.... I understand the point - will a female cat abandon the baby in order to stop the pain but wtf does that mean in the course of ANYTHING? I hate people who need to make shit up in order to justifiy the grants they apply for so they can keep a job where they do JACKSHIT all day long to keep their paycheck.

Between animal research (think bullet testing - will this bullet cause the head to explode or go right through it) and dog fighting - why ANYONE but the most selfish sonsofbitches would dump their animal or adopt it out for free to any asshole who answer an ad without a background check is beyond me.

[deleted account]

Speaking as someone who wouldn't be alive without it, if it is necessary to save human life, then yes.

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