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32 Monkeys Baked to Death at Charles River Labs

Written by PETA | August 12, 2008
paddleasia / CC

Charles River Laboratories has finally had to own up to killing 32 monkeys under their “care.” The monkeys were baked alive when a thermostat malfunctioned; no alarm system was in place to alert staff to save the monkeys. Nobody even knew about the deaths until the following morning.

Charles River’s announcement follows a string of contact with PETA from a whistleblower claiming to be a Charles River employee, who was concerned about what appeared to be gross negligence. We immediately followed up with a formal complaint to the U.S. Department of Agriculture (the body charged with enforcing the minimal standards of the Animal Welfare Act), which subsequently opened an inquiry into the lab.

“This is a terrible and unfortunate tragedy,” the company said in a statement released to the media. The monkeys were slated to be used in preclinical drug experiments, so Charles River’s concern is quite curious. The deaths were written off as the result of “several human errors”—unlike the frequent and intentional monkey murders that preclinical testing laboratories voluntarily participate in.

This accident is only one disgusting incident among many for Charles River’s abysmal record. They were cited for 22 violations of the ever-so-minimal standards of the pitifully limited Animal Welfare Act in 2005 alone, and they netted 20 violations (as reported to federal officials) in 2006 and 2007.

Stay tuned to this spot. More’s afoot on this front.

Written by Sean Conner

Commenting is closed.
  • dclinton says:

    TO I: “It might be considered cruelty to humans to put those you love through the emotional physical or financial pain in order to support your choice.” SO YOU THINK PEOPLE HAVING TO CHANGE THEIR MEAL PLANS IS CRUEL, BUT YOU DON’T THINK EXPERIMENTING ON ANIMALS IS CRUEL? HOW OLD ARE YOU?

  • Neil.Mansfield says:

    It is sad such bad things happen,We need to protect our own species

  • Neil.Mansfield says:

    Good, They would taste like a roasted chicken. Roast a lot more monkeys

  • Mahevish says:

    according to ppl’s religious pt of view, animals r made to be eaten by man. okay but answer this : is it religiously and ethically right to ‘use animals for exploitative purposes like these? being a religious person myself i have never read any allowance but very cruel punishment for such behavior

  • l says:

    I’ve been reading some blog posts about PETA since the McCruelty campaign. I’m not a vegetarian or an animal activist. I’m just wondering if people who have posted here and on other sites in support of PETA have a balanced view of human life and animal life. I don’t think animals deserve to die but I guess if I were stranded on a desert island with an ocean of fish around me I’d be eating fish for dinner. Does that count as animal cruelty? In response to the post by vegan4animals I think that it’s courageous to live your life for your ideals. However that is not just a decision you are making for yourself. I can only assume that everyone who knows and loves you agrees with your views. It might be considered cruelty to humans to put those you love through the emotional physical or financial pain in order to support your choice. One last question for vegans. Are all vegans prolife? If not what is the difference between a chicken egg and a human embryo used in stem cell research? Not looking for a fight just an intelligent response addressing the points I’ve raised. Thanks.

  • Caleb says:

    This is awful! Why were they even in a place where they could bake anyway??? This is just…GRAHHH!!!! There aren’t any words I can think of to describe it. I think that this is gross neglegence and that the college should be shut down or some sort of legal action should take place.

  • Hannah says:

    It is pathetic when the researchers care more about the money that they are pocketing then the safety of the aniamls. But when it all come down to it if they really cared about the aniamls then they would not be performing experinmnets on them. This is a very cruel and mean thing i think that the scientists should have to go through some of the things that they put these poor animals through!!!!!!!

  • Hannah Blount says:

    I think that this is very irresponsible on the labratories part. but when you really think about it they rpobably dont even care because if they care then they would not be performing experiments on them in the first place.

  • Roni says:

    Ughhhhh…….Ass wipes!!!!!!!!

  • Cindy says:

    The animal researchers care more about their paychecks and getting their research published in their medical journals than showing care for their research subjects.If they actually cared about the research they were doing their research animals would be better taken care of treated humanelyput down humanelyetc.They know that nothing will happen to them like lose their job research grants would go to another company or universityetc. SO keep putting pressure on these peopleuniversities and research companies! It will be a great day when ALL animal tests are replaced with more applicable and realistic tests.

  • Mary Thomasson says:

    Getting involved by openning eyes and hearts through publishing this info everywhere calls attention to those who act in cruel and deranged ways. Pity their families! I wonder if their children know? They would have nightmares!

  • Liz says:

    There is hardly any need for animal testing anymore. Surely scientists can rely more on computer programs VR petri dishes or human volunteers who can be compensated. God knows drug companies can afford it.

  • Rob says:

    So sad. There was no need for this…

  • lynda downie says:

    I agree with Christina can you imagine the outrage if these were humans? Is it any wonder Peta has to grab headlines to draw attention to animal cruelty when this kind of atrocity gets hardly a mention in the media?

  • Nightwings81 says:

    I completely agree. How can we be expected to trust the word and compentence of doctors who can’t even show compassion..or common sense…enough to take care of these beautiful animals. They should not even be using the animals for testing since the differences between us biologically does not give conclusive and safe evidence. They test the poor monkeys to destruction…and STILL have to test on humans before they’re allowed to release their crap. It’s a JOKE. It’s simply a way for sadistic people to live out their desire to cause pain…and hide it under a false patina of “science”. Everyone working in the building who knew of the monkeys should be prosecuted to the highest extent of the law for cruelty and neglect. My god the presidential candidates should stop worrying about their false campaign images and take a true stand against this senseless and hidden violence. They sure would get MY vote then!

  • SparkyGump says:

    I have rheumatoid arthritis in my spine. Often people who know about my condition and the fact I’m an animal activist ask me if there was a drug that was tested on animals could cure my disease would I take it. I always answer that I would rather endure a life of pain and stiffness than cause a second of fear or pain to an animal. I wish those “researchers” could go through what they are doing to those primates.

  • vegan4animals says:

    this is not okay. it is not okay to treat monkeys cats humans this way. if it is not okay to treat a human this way it is not okay to treat any animal this way. …all of this torture for them to make $$$ and still all of the drugs they make are either useless or even more destructive long or even short term. they torture animals with tax dollars they get PAID to torture animals. all of this HORRENDOUS cruelty and killing and yet the truth prevails…we’re all going to die from something so why not just die without taking others down with you like a heartless scab? They must switch to cruelty free research. They can still rip humans off with useless dangerous toxic drugs but at least animals will not be involved.

  • r says:

    dam corporate welfare tax getting leeches who think that using animals to save a human life is viable. NO NOT ANY MORE…time to stop time for this company and all others to pay for their crimes agaisnt the animal world.hen will the us government take action against these companies who blatantly ignore laws that protect these animals from dying needlessly


    This horror event shows us once more the ugly criminal face of vivisection laboratories! I’m bleeding together with these innocent creatures until the last judgement day and then we shall see who shall burn at last!

  • nicole says:

    this is disgusting… it’s not enough that they intentionally harm these poor creatures they leave them to bake to death!!! what needs to happen to stop this senseless shit!!! the research is not necessary its cruel and it is a total waste of money.

  • Barbara Simmons says:

    This is absurd!!! The monkeys already suffer with the experiments and now they died because of negligence??? OMG! This is disgusting!

  • kelly says:

    If they can’t even handle caring for animals can you imagine how they are screwing up their DRUG TRIALS and putting millions of people at risk? These drugs that supposedly “pass” animal tests are killing and hurting people and getting pulled from the market Charles River is made up of incompetent con artists What a scam Charles River is running. Hurting people and animals and getting rich.

  • Christina says:

    Wow this is messed up. So not only was there no alarm system which would be valuable for them i mean they kinda need those monkeys for testing right? And then agian why were they testing on the poor monkeys in the first place? They wrote it off as an “accident” if that was 32 humans who died this would be a completely larger story and everyone would know about it. Theyve had 42 violations in the last 3 years shouldnt that alone require they stop this madness?

  • heather henson says: