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Cat’s Claws Come Out at Fancy Gala

Written by PETA | October 20, 2011

Even without a big striped hat, our mischievous cat shook things up at the St. Louis Children’s Hospital gala this past weekend. Dressed to the nines in a bowtie and tails, the cat grabbed the attention of the gala attendees while his fellow protesters handed out information about the hospital’s abuse of cats for cruel and archaic intubation training exercises in its Pediatric Advanced Life Support (PALS) course.

The leaflets were, unfortunately, not works of children’s fiction. Trainees at St. Louis Children’s force hard plastic tubes down cats’ delicate windpipes over and over again in a procedure that can cause bleeding and swelling in the tissue of the cats’ throats as well as pain, scarring, collapsed lungs, and even death. One gala attendee exclaimed, “Are they really doing this? I have a cat at home. This is horrible!”

Readily available infant simulators have been shown to better prepare trainees to treat sick and injured babies and children. Even the PALS course’s sponsor, the American Heart Association, strongly opposes animal use in the course. The group has distanced itself from the few facilities that still use animals and only recommends the use of simulators.

If you do not like it, not one little bit, take a minute to tell Saint Louis Children’s Hospital to stop abusing cats and better serve children by switching to modern, superior human-patient simulators. 

Written by Michelle Sherrow

Commenting is closed.
  • bseals333 says:

    don’t hurt the cats

  • Vicky says:

    Please stop abusing cats. Use another way to teach students.

  • Nicholas Gysi says:

    cat labs are cruel and unnecessary. alternatives exist. close down the labs.

  • Crazeecub says:

    I was dismayed to learn that St. Louis Children’s Hospital continues to use cats for intubation training in its Pediatric Advanced Life Support (PALS) course, even though the animals experience a great deal of suffering and the course’s sponsor, the American Heart Association, officially states that it, “does not require or endorse the use of animals in PALS courses” and that “the AHA recommends that any hands-on intubation training for the AHA PALS course be performed on lifelike human manikins.” Nearly every other PALS facility across the country–including St. Louis University, Cardinal Glennon Children’s Medical Center, and St. Louis Community College–uses exclusively human simulators for this training. Good lord, can you just close your eyes for a moment? Imagine being in a small, barred, enclosure. Think of all the strange sounds and smells. Imagine hearing footsteps, and knowing that it is time again. Your throat burns from priorrepeated, intubations. You are terrified. You want some affection, a kind word, some comfort. Instead, the cage door opens again. You are roughly grabbed by the scruff of the neck and hauled out. With a sinking feeling of defeat, you realize that it is going to happen again. Over and over. This time you may die, but you don’t know that. Maybe it would be better. What would be even more wonderful, would be to be taken away, and given to someone who will love you. Please immediately put an end to the use of animals in the PALS course.

  • Tracy says:

    I am a nurse and I know that you can now use simulation. This is outdated and abusive and should be stopped immediately. Please!

  • Maria L. Lopez says:

    STOP ABUSING CATS. They are living creatures, cats deserved to be taking care, NOT GIVE THEM PAIN!!! STOP,STOP, STOP