Written by Michelle Kretzer
The University of Utah
just got slapped with an official
warning from the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA)
violating the federal Animal Welfare Act by failing
to properly review and oversee experiments on animals.
If the university is caught violating this law again, it could face up to
$10,000 in fines per incident.
The USDA's action was based in part on violations
that were uncovered following PETA's 2009 undercover investigation that brought to light
suffering of the dogs, cats, monkeys, rabbits, and other animals experimented
on there. We documented that monkeys were deprived of water so that they would
cooperate with experimenters in exchange for a sip of water, that a kitten died
from dehydration, and that other sick and injured animals were denied
veterinary care and left to languish and eventually die. You may recall that
many of the animals the school was using in experiments were homeless cats and
dogs it had purchased from local animal shelters until an intense year-long PETA campaign put an end to pound seizure in
Utah. Since this landmark victory, several animal experiments at the U
have been completely halted.
You can help animals suffering at the
University of Utah and in other horrendous laboratories by clicking here to ask the federal
government to divert tax dollars away from cruel animal experiments and put
them toward modern and humane non-animal research methods.
Written by PETA
We recently told you about how an intensive year-long campaign that was launched in the wake of PETA's shocking undercover investigation at the University of Utah (the U) finally prompted the school to stop experimenting on cats and dogs from local animal shelters. The U's laboratories were the last in the state to buy animals from shelters, which means that cats and dogs in Utah animal shelters are no longer at risk for having holes drilled into their skulls or having their chests cut open for cruel and deadly experiments. But even we are still learning that this is only one of the many ways that animals' lives are being saved by our campaign in Utah.
According to The Salt Lake Tribune, some U experiments have "completely halted" now that faculty members can no longer exploit animal shelters as a cheap and easy source of test subjects. The inability to obtain animals from shelters may have also helped prompt the U and the Primary Children's Medical Center to end the use of cats for intubation training (which PETA had also vigorously protested) and to switch to infant-patient simulators.
As part of our efforts to end the sale of shelter animals to the U, PETA had also erected a billboard urging the last shelter in the state that was still selling animals to the U to end the shameful practice. While our intent was to expose the shelter's complicity, the effects appear to be much more far-reaching. The shelter's leadership has stated that PETA's billboard actually boosted adoptions at the shelter, presumably because compassionate people who learned from our billboard about the possible fate of these animals flocked to the shelter to save the dogs and cats from misery in a laboratory. And since the U agreed to stop buying animals from this shelter, several rescue groups are now working to lower euthanasia rates by getting the shelter's animals placed into foster programs and permanent, loving homes.
funkblast/cc by 2.0
What started as an undercover investigation to expose the horrors of animal testing at one university has changed the lives of animals all over Utah forever. None of it would have been possible without your support. Thank you.
Written by Michelle Sherrow
Following PETA's undercover investigation and an intense year-long campaign, the University of Utah (also known as "the U") has announced that it will no longer purchase dogs and cats from North Utah Valley Animal Shelter (NUVAS)—or any other animal shelter—to be used in invasive and deadly experiments. Since the U was the last Utah purchaser of homeless animals for use in experiments, this victory means the complete end of "pound seizure" in the state of Utah!
PETA's shocking investigation at the U in 2009 has prompted a sea change in the treatment of animals in Utah. Until then, public shelters were forced by law to sell animals to the U. Soon after we broke our case, the U was cited for nine violations of federal animal welfare laws, Utah legislators amended the state's pound-seizure law so that government-run animal shelters could choose not to sell animals for experimentation, and the shelter that was then selling the most animals to the school ended the practice. A PETA lawsuit compelled a city to turn over records of the animals it sold to the U so that the public would know who these betrayed animals were. And who can forget Sheena, the loveable mutt whom PETA helped rescue from the U, where she would have gone under the knife, just in time for Christmas.
The U's decision appears to have already pushed it to find more humane research methods. Instead of repeatedly forcing tubes down shelter cats' throats in a cruel and crude intubation training course, the scheduled animal laboratory was recently canceled after PETA protests, and modern human-infant simulators were used instead.
Now, animals entering the state's animal shelters will no longer be betrayed by those who should help them, and Utah residents with missing dogs or cats can at least know that if their beloved animal companions make it to a shelter, they won't be sold to laboratories, where they would experience lives filled with suffering and grisly deaths.
A huge thank-you to all of you who asked the U and NUVAS to do the right thing by animals. This is a major victory, but there are still too many animals suffering in university laboratories—in Michigan, South Carolina, and Ohio and in both Dallas and Galveston, Texas, just to name a few. So please keep speaking up until every cage is empty. And to help PETA continue to help animals, become a member today!
It's time once again for the not-so-coveted Vivisector of the Month award. Of course, all vivisectors deserve the "prize" for their mad science, but we've narrowed the field to two particularly nasty candidates. We're asking you to vote for the person you would most like to see in a stockade getting beaned in the head with fruit.
Mark Lowell is a faculty member at the University of Michigan (UM) who seems to have forgotten that when he went through medical school he swore an oath to do no harm. Lowell directs a Survival Flight course for nurses; in the course, cats and pigs are tormented even though superior human simulators are used to teach the same skills in other courses at UM. Cats have hard tubes repeatedly forced down their windpipes for intubation training, and many of them are killed. Pigs have holes cut into their limbs, throats, and chests and are stabbed with needles in their bones and the tissue surrounding their hearts. PETA, students at UM, the campus newspaper, the student government, and even UM alum Iggy Pop are vigorously urging Lowell to shut down this nasty operation.
In the other corner, weighing in at "cold and callous," is Bradley Greger. This peach of a person is one of the experimenters we've been telling you about at the University of Utah (the U) who buys cats from the North Utah Valley Animal Shelter and subjects them to cruel experiments before killing them. Greger also drills holes into monkeys' and cats' skulls and implants electrodes into their brains. He screws titanium pins into the monkeys' skulls and attaches an aluminum head-restraint device to immobilize the animals in chairs for up to eight hours per day for brain experiments.
You can use our form to e-mail the University of Michigan and the University of Utah and tell them that you support modern, humane science—not cruel animal experiments.
So who will it be: Mark "Lower Than Low" Lowell or Bradley "The Butcher" Greger? Get your moldy oranges ready, aim, and fire.
Because the University of Utah (the U) still doesn't want to 'fess up about exactly how experimenters are tormenting and killing dogs, cats, monkeys, and other animals behind the doors of its laboratories, PETA has filed a lawsuit against the U for withholding records.
We originally requested the records—which the school is required to release under Utah's Government Records Access and Management Act (GRAMA)—following our 8-month undercover investigation at the U, but the school repeatedly sought ways to stonewall and delayed releasing the documents for nearly a year.
PETA persisted, and school officials begrudgingly turned over 1,300 pages of records related to the animals locked inside the university's laboratories, but with much of the key information deleted. They also charged us $2,420 for the records. This attempt to keep PETA from exposing the truth is not only unethical but also illegal. Under GRAMA, if the university wants to redact any information in a document, it is required to cite a legitimate reason for every single redaction, which the U failed to do. PETA now seeks to obtain the complete set of documents and force the U to repay some of the exorbitant fee it charged for the redaction-riddled records.
PETA's 2009 investigation revealed that, among other abuses, a cat had holes drilled into his skull and electrodes inserted into his brain; week-old kittens had chemicals injected into their brains, causing painful fluid buildups; dogs had their chests cut open and devices implanted on their hearts; and sick and injured animals were left to die with no veterinary care. The investigation led Utah to repeal an archaic law requiring animal shelters to sell homeless animals to laboratories for use in experiments. It also prompted the U.S. Department of Agriculture to cite the U for violations of animal welfare laws.
You might remember that last month, we successfully settled a similar lawsuit that we filed against Davis County, Utah, in order to force the county to turn over its documents regarding animals its shelter had sold to the U. Our suggestion: The school should take a cue from Davis County, save itself some trouble and legal expense, and hand over the information, which the public has a legal right to see.
Hugs was one of the roughly 250 animals who were surrendered by PLRS.
Even though The Hasselhoffs was canceled after just two episodes, 2010 still turned out to be a pretty great year. Thirty-three Chilean miners were rescued after being trapped underground for more than two months, and dog guardians were introduced to the amazing stuffing-free Crazy Critters™ dog toys. While impressive, I am not sure they quite measure up to 2009's Shake Weight®.
2010 was also an outstanding year for PETA. In addition to celebrating 30 years of fighting to end the suffering of animals, PETA scored a number of remarkable victories. Here are a few of them:
1. Professional Laboratory and Research Services (PLRS): PLRS surrendered nearly 200 dogs and more than 50 cats and shut its doors just one week after PETA released the results of its shocking undercover investigation of the laboratory and filed a complaint with the U.S. Department of Agriculture.
2. Nike: After PETA sent Nike undercover footage detailing the gruesome suffering that the exotic-skins industry inflicts on animals, the world's leading shoe manufacturer and its upscale affiliate Cole Haan stopped selling the skins of alligators, snakes, and other animals.
3. NASA: And who can forget the early holiday gift that PETA and our supporters received when NASA called off plans to conduct cruel radiation experiments on monkeys earlier this month?
4. Utah Pound Seizure: Prompted by PETA's shocking undercover investigation inside laboratories at the University of Utah, the state amended its archaic "pound seizure" law so that government-run animal shelters would no longer be forced to sell dogs and cats to laboratories for use in cruel and deadly experiments. PETA's investigation and the new law also prompted the shelter that had been selling the most animals to the university to end the shameful practice.
5. U.S. Global Exotics (USGE): After reviewing evidence gathered during PETA's seven-month undercover investigation of this PETCO and PetSmart supplier, Arlington (Texas) Municipal Judge Michael Smith awarded custody of the 26,000 animals rescued from the warehouse to the city of Arlington. USGE closed, the company's empty facility went up for sale, and a federal arrest warrant was issued for USGE owner Jasen Shaw, who is under investigation for smuggling, conspiracy, and aiding and abetting and is believed to be hiding in New Zealand.
6. ITO EN, Ltd.: After more than two years of private discussions with PETA, Japan's ITO EN, Ltd.—the world's largest green-tea manufacturer, with more than $3 billion in annual global sales—instituted a new policy against conducting animal tests.
7. Lufthansa: Less than a day after PETA released photos of more than 50 beagles who were transported on a Lufthansa cargo plane from the U.S. to an animal testing facility in Scotland, Lufthansa announced a new policy prohibiting the transport of dogs and cats to laboratories.
While this year was marked by some great achievements, we still need your help to make 2011 an even better year for animals. Will you support our lifesaving efforts to stop animal suffering and abuse in the new year and beyond?
Written by Frank Schippers
In response to our January 2010 lawsuit (and with a court date rapidly approaching), Davis County, Utah, has finally agreed to abide by the law and provide PETA with the intake forms and transfer records for the approximately 100 dogs and cats that it's animal shelter callously sold to the University of Utah in 2009 to be tormented in experiments. While Davis County ended this shameful practice earlier this year, these records will show that the homeless dogs and cats who are unfortunate enough to end up cut up and killed in the university's laboratories have names and personalities and are no different than the animals whom many of us consider family and with whom we share our homes. Indeed, some were peoples' lost and surrendered animal companions.
Under the agreement, Davis County will be reimbursing PETA for 50 percent of PETA's legal fees—nearly $18,000.
Since our subsequent undercover investigation at the University of Utah, the state legislature amended the law so that government-operated animal shelters are no longer required to sell dogs and cats to laboratories for use in cruel and deadly experiments upon request. Only one shelter in the state—Lindon's North Utah Valley Animal Shelter (NUVAS)—continues to profit by betraying homeless animals and selling them to the university.
Please take a moment to urge NUVAS to stop stocking the university's laboratories with helpless victims.
Written by Jennifer O'Connor
Yes, there is a Santa Claus—at least there is for Sheena, a lovable mutt who was slated to be used in cruel experiments at the University of Utah (the U) but is now safe in a foster home.
Sheena's former guardian, Gayle, reluctantly surrendered the dog to the North Utah Valley Animal Shelter (NUVAS) in hopes of finding her a new home because Sheena wasn't getting along with another dog in the house and Gayle could not afford to keep three large dogs. Unbeknownst to Gayle, who visited Sheena at NUVAS several times to make sure that she was being cared for, the shelter sells animals to laboratories for use in experiments. One day, Gayle called NUVAS to check on Sheena and learned that, without warning, the dog had been sold to the U. When Gayle asked NUVAS staffers what would happen to her dog and pressed them for details on the shelter's arrangement with the U, she was told that shelter employees are prohibited from speaking with the public about it.
After contacting the U to make sure that Sheena was still alive, Gayle immediately called PETA's emergency hotline and learned that dogs who are purchased from NUVAS by the U are often surgically mutilated and killed. Gayle demanded that the U return Sheena to her, and with PETA's help, she found Sheena a loving foster home, where the dog will stay until a permanent home becomes available.
Sheena will have a merry Christmas after all! But many other dogs aren't so lucky. PETA is urging NUVAS to follow in the footsteps of every other shelter in the state and stop betraying homeless animals by selling them for experiments.
If you are unable to properly care for your dog or cat and feel that you must find a new home for him or her, please make sure that you don't surrender your companion to a shelter that sells animals to laboratories.
Written by Heather Moore
UPDATE: The University of Utah has announced that it no longer will purchase animals from North Utah Valley Animal Shelter or any other shelter for experiments!
Remember the North Utah Valley Animal Shelter (NUVAS)? You know, the only animal shelter in Utah that still betrays dogs and cats by selling them to the University of Utah for invasive, painful, and deadly experiments? PETA recently obtained photos of nearly 50 dogs whom NUVAS had sold for experiments, and here are two of them:
These sweet dogs, who were probably once someone's companions, may have ended up like other dogs who were recently purchased from NUVAS: killed and dissected after having holes cut into their necks and chests and pacemakers implanted in their hearts in order to induce an irregular heartbeat.
How many more animals like Chance and Scout will NUVAS betray? Perhaps none—if we all share these dogs' photos online and call for an end to NUVAS' shameful practice of selling animals for experiments—and get our Facebook friends and Twitter tweeps to do the same.
Written by Lindsay Pollard-Post
Thanks to a recent undercover investigation in which PETA revealed that the University of Utah (the U) had bought more than 100 homeless animals from animal shelters and subjected them to invasive, painful, and deadly experiments, a law was passed so that shelters in Utah are no longer required to turn animals over to laboratories. There is now only one animal shelter in the entire state—the North Utah Valley Animal Shelter (NUVAS)—that voluntarily continues to betray homeless dogs and cats by selling them to the U. The NUVAS is signing the torture-followed-by-death warrant for animals it hands over, as most are likely to suffer in the sort of archaic experiments documented by PETA's undercover investigator. A recent demonstration outside NUVAS sent the message loud and clear that this betrayal of trust cannot go on:
The demonstrators handed out leaflets to passersby, warning them about NUVAS' "pound-seizure" policy. They begged people who were surrendering animals to take their cats and dogs to a different shelter and personally rescued two surrendered cats, Angel and Libby, who might have otherwise ended up being tortured in the U's experiments. Let's keep the pressure on NUVAS and press for an end to its release of animals for experimentation.
you have a general question for PETA and would like a response, please e-mail Info@peta.org. If you need to report cruelty to
an animal, please click
here. If you are reporting an animal in imminent danger and know where to find the
animal and if the abuse is taking place right now, please call your local
police department. If the police are unresponsive, please call PETA
immediately at 757-622-7382 and press 2.
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Almost all of us grew up eating meat, wearing leather, and going to circuses and zoos. We never considered the impact of these actions on the animals involved. For whatever reason, you are now asking the question: Why should animals have rights? Read more.