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The practice of animal experimentation began when religious leaders condemned the dissection of human corpses. Human experimentation and dissection is not opposed anymore but animal experimentation still continues. Almost all new products, from drugs to cosmetic products go through an animal experimentation phase, but they are not required to. Though it may seem to be a good option as opposed to human experimentation, it is not. Animal experimentation uses billions of taxpayer dollars every year, hardly has any scientific relevance, and animal experimentation causes a huge deal of pain, suffering and death to animals.
Animal experimentation spends 5 billion dollars of tax payer dollars per year. The amount of results seen from animal experimentation does not compare with the amount of money and lives of animals spent on research. Animal experimentation has not shown any huge or relevant results, as is widely thought. Dr. Charles Mayo, of the Mayo Clinic states "I abhor vivisection. It should at least be curbed. Better, it should be abolished. I know of no achievement through vivisection, no scientific discovery, that could not have been obtained without such barbarism and cruelty. The whole thing is evil."(PETA 1). The reason for this is that all animals, from humans to rats, vary and react differently to different things.
In an experiment conducted with fluoride, 520 rats and mice were given the substance, and though it did not affect the mice, but it made the rats sick, and gave them cancer among other things. If a substance can have such widely varying results from a rat to a mouse, any animal to a human cannot be much different. Also, if penicillin were tested on guinea pigs, it would not be used today as it kills guinea pigs, aspirin kills cats, and morphine is a stimulant to cats goats and horses. Though it is thought that polio’s vaccine was discovered by experimentation through animals, this is not true. Dr. Albert Sabin, the developer of the oral vaccine to polio, stated that "paralytic polio could be dealt with only by preventing the irreversible destruction of the large number of motor nerve cells, and the work on prevention was delayed by an erroneous conception of the nature of the human disease based on misleading experimental models of the disease in monkeys."(PETA 1). Not only does animal experimentation have low scientific credibility, it causes great pain and discomfort to animals.
One example of this is eye irritancy tests for beauty products. A rabbits eyes are forced open and clipped onto the forehead by the lids, the rabbit may break its neck or back trying to remove the clip. Over a period of time, usually over 3 days, the damage to the rabbits eyes is recorded. Pain relievers or depressants are not administered as this will interfere with test results. Though this is not necessary, the companies do this as a defense from being sued, claiming the rabbits were not greatly harmed, though the rabbits are killed 2-4 days after the tests. An example of animal misery is with the chimpanzee, the closest primate relative to a human being. These animals share 99% of the genetic composition of a human. From their birth (in laboratory conditions) they are isolated and kept away from other animals, not having contact with any human or other chimp. The loneliness that these animals feel usually drives them to insanity. Chimps are usually used in tests on AIDS, hepatitis, and other human diseases that are problematic. All animals that actually survive the cruel tests that take place for the name of science/beauty/etc are usually killed after the testing.
Animal experimentation is a cruel, inhumane act. It costs tax money that could be put to better use, has not accomplished much of anything, has low scientific credibility, and causes great pain to the animals tested, all eventually dieing prematurely. This is a very old and outdated practice and seems only done for peace of mind, though tests on human beings have made far more medical advances. If you believe animal experimentation should stop, you should write the companies or medical organizations conducting animal experiments. These include March of Dimes and the American Cancer Association. You can also boycott cosmetic products that do not state that they have not tested on animals.
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Animal testing, Biology, Bioethics, Animal welfare, Applied ethics, Laboratory techniques, Medical research, Research methods, Vivisection, Animal rights, Guinea pig, Genetically modified organism
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