When you think about it…shouldn’t studies related to human beings be conducted using data from humans?

Shouldn't data from humans be used instead of animals in order to study our own kind?

Shouldn’t data from humans be used instead of animals in order to study our own kind?

Did you know that stressed rats drank more alcohol than non-stressed rats? How does knowing this help humans? Additionally, studies that test for the effects of nicotine on the lungs of baby mice or seek to understand the sexual preferences of hamsters seem a tad bit off the mark when it comes to extrapolating data for human use.

What are we gaining in improving the health and well-being of humans when we focus on the drinking, smoking, and sexual activities of rodents? These studies, which number in the hundreds if not the thousands, are often funded with taxpayer dollars.

There is little return on these investments of millions of dollars while at the same time there is a huge investment in animal abuse. And just as lab beakers and other laboratory equipment are often discarded when no longer of value, so too are the lives of these animals.

When you think about it…why are we studying mice when we should be studying humans? Why are we perpetuating animal abuse when humans are suffering and dying…shouldn’t studies related to human beings be conducted using data from humans?

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When you think about it…you’re not a mouse, a cat, a guinea pig, or a monkey.

Many drugs tested on animals that are considered safe may not have the same effects on humans.

Many drugs tested on animals that are considered safe may not have the same effects on humans.

Mice, cats, guinea pigs, and monkeys are among some of the animals used in laboratories to test pharmaceuticals to ensure their efficacy and safety for use in humans. There’s just one major flaw. Humans aren’t mice, cats, guinea pigs, or monkeys. So, drugs that may be safe in them can turn out to be harmful to us. For example, a drug trial of an Alzheimer’s vaccine that had been tested on mice had to be stopped because it caused brain inflammation in humans. And drugs harmful to mice, cats, guinea pigs, or monkeys may never get on the market yet may be just the cure that’s needed for a human-related diseases. Tamoxifen caused tumors in rats but fortunately tests were continued and it was found to be an effective drug against some human breast cancers.

Animal testing wastes many lives—not just those of the animals used in experiments but also the lives of humans. Some are harmed by what were considered harmless drugs and other suffer without drugs that could help them because they harmed laboratory animals. When you think about it…you’re not a mouse, a cat, a guinea pig, or a monkey. So why should the drugs you take be tested on them?

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When you think about it…companion animals forced to live in extreme conditions need loving homes.

sxc_beagle

Beagles should not be used for product testing, but you can help by giving one a home.

Think about beagles used in laboratory experiments, or greyhounds forced to race. Puppy mill dogs come to mind also. All of these animals and many more live under extreme and often abusive, painful, and fear inducing circumstances. How do they fair when they are removed from those situations and placed in loving, permanent homes?

Some of the animals who are liberated from laboratories, race tracks, or mills need time to be rehabilitated before they are placed in forever homes. Rescue groups and sanctuaries around the country work tirelessly to help these animals overcome their past experiences. Some animals may need extended stays in foster care as they become accustomed to life outside their previous confinement. Others are ready within just a few short weeks to be adopted.

The overriding consideration on the part of anyone considering adopting an animal who has lived under extreme circumstances is patience. Patience as the animal learns what a home is, what stairs are, how grass feels under his or her paws. Patience when the animal becomes agitated at what we consider the normal sights, sounds, and smells of our home and neighborhood. Patience at what we might consider aberrant behavior, such excessive licking, salivating, or circling. Over time, many of these animals begin to relax in their new environment; begin to trust that they will not be hurt; begin to live a normal life.

Additional animals who may need rehoming after their experiences, especially in laboratories, are birds, rabbits, guinea pigs, hamsters, rats, and mice. Of course, this begs the question, should we be testing on animals?

When you think about it…regardless of where a companion animal started his or her life, a loving and safe home is best.

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Scottish Scientists Seek Breakthrough in Medical Testing

Paws Up!
To scientists at the Heriot-Watt University for their work in creating an artificial human liver for drug testing.

According to a news article, “Scientists at Heriot-Watt University are working towards creating the world’s first artificial human livers for drug testing to drastically cut the number of live animals used and get life-saving medicines into the clinic faster.”

Rats, rabbits, dogs, and other animals suffer when used for testing.

By advancing work such as being done at the Heriot-Watt University, fewer laboratory animals will find themselves being used as test subjects. In addition, “If successful, this technology will enable drug developers to test using human organ models at a much earlier stage. It should highlight drug failures well before they reach the clinic and help target resources towards the most promising new drug candidates.”

Take Action: Send a note of thanks to the university expressing your appreciation of the work the university’s scientists are doing to improve human health while at the same time reducing pain and suffering on other animals.

Professor Steve Chapman
Principal and Vice-Chancellor
Heriot-Watt University
Edinburgh, Scotland
UK EH14 4AS
enquiries@hw.ac.uk

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