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Cruel Experiment on Sheep Violates Law, PETA Petitions to Prosecute

Written by PETA | March 18, 2010


PETA always tries to explain to people that what is done to animals inside laboratories would be illegal if it happened anywhere else. Burning, shocking, or poisoning a dog would typically land someone in jail. But paradoxically, as long as the abuse happens in a laboratory and is called “science,” the people responsible for it are exempt from prosecution under cruelty laws in almost every state. Fortunately, there are some instances in which animal experimenters can be held legally accountable for tormenting animals, but we’re learning that even in those cases, experimenters seem to be above the law. As you probably could’ve guessed, we’re fighting to make sure that justice for animals is served!

Last year, Madison, Wisconsin’s Alliance for Animals filed a complaint with the district attorney of Dane County alleging that experimenters at the University of Wisconsin–Madison (remember them?) had violated the state’s Crimes Against Animals statute by killing sheep in U.S. Navy–funded decompression experiments (killing animals by decompression is specifically prohibited by Wisconsin law). The animals were placed in high-pressure hyperbaric chambers, and some died from the excruciating pain of decompression sickness (“the bends”), which occurs when bubbles of nitrogen gas form in the blood, muscles, and organs, including the brain. Did we mention that the French Navy and the U.K. Ministry of Defence no longer conduct decompression experiments on animals?

Dane County District Attorney Brian Blanchard investigated and concluded that UW-Madison did in fact violate state law by killing sheep by decompression. Incredibly, he decided that it wasn’t worth his time and effort to pursue charges.

Fortunately, there is a Wisconsin law that allows private parties to request that a circuit judge order the filing of a criminal complaint in cases in which a crime has been committed and the D.A. refuses to take action. So PETA and Alliance for Animals have stepped in to petition for prosecution.

We’ll keep you up to date on this case as it unfolds. In the meantime, please help us put an end to laboratory atrocities that are still taking place in campuses across the U.S.

Written by Karin Bennett

Commenting is closed.
  • Almudena says:


  • Silvia says:

    stop these cruel practices!

  • giovanna says:

    Traduzione da italiano verso inglese But when the time comes that the man has finished making these cruelties on defenseless creatures?! Giovanna italia

  • Ruben Resendiz says:

    Please stop! It’s torture. You can’t call it science.



  • yael di-nur says:

    Stop Cruel Experiment on Sheep

  • Mom157 says:

    This cruelty should be stopped now, why should animals suffer like this because of man.

  • Alessandro Piana says:

    You can’t call it science, but just abuse…

  • celia says:

    Mahatma Gandhi said: “greatness and moral progress of a nation can be judget by how is the treatment of animals”. I think it’s more than enough…

  • antonia maestrea says:

    “You have just dined, and however scrupulously the slaughterhouse is concealed in the graceful distance of miles, there is complicity.” -Ralph Waldo Emerson

  • giuseppe luigi saccardo says:

    Please, stop this horrible expmeriments!

  • Armine Simonyan says:

    STOP IT!

  • andreia shotwell says:

    Please stop these cruel practices.

  • Amanda Law says:

    Treat animals humanely. This kind of experimentation is torture.

  • Miriam Ivaldi says:


  • Melissandre Langlois says:


  • Sin says:

    This cruel practice against animals must be stopped. Perpetuators are not above the law in this regard. Those found guilty must be brought to justice and penalized to the full extent of the law.

  • eileen says:

    How many times does an animal have to be tested on, are the university’s of America, The Land of The Free” have a competion amongst yourselve’s to see who can impose the most suffering and agony towards these helpless creature’s, I always thought American solidiers went to fight for Liberation and Freedom, all their work is undone, because you people are waring against animals, I am disgusted, because your experiments go on and on and on!!!!!!!!Please Stop!!!!

  • Cassandra Wilson says:

    Please stop these cruel and unnecessary experiments.

  • Elisabeth says:

    stop this NOW

  • Leigh Pickering says:

    How could they look in there eyes, and still carry on this torture

  • Michele Stipe says:

    It’s not only sick. hee kind of people should be locked away somewhere on some island never to escape again! Sick Idiots!

  • Chiara Innocenti says:

    Please, stop the expmeriments!

  • Jade says:

    OMG >:( Luv to the sheep <3 <3

  • AnimalLover says:

    Yes, this is animal cruelty. Those who do this should be in jail. Wouldn’t it be nice if no more animals were abused in any way,for any reason?!

  • Stella Veldkamp says:

    no comment, just STOP cruelty!

  • Deena Naidoo says:

    Please stop this unnecessary brutal killings.

  • Doreen Pryor says:

    Please stop these horific experiments.

  • Ekaterina says:


  • Dawn Bradford says:

    Thank you PETA for giving animals a say when they cannot speak for themselves!

  • Iris Neuwirth says:

    It is a shame , to be human !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • grady says:

    The time has been long, long overdue whereby technological advances in models are considered the ‘Norm’ in science. There by relegating animal experimentation into the the abyss of antiquity.

  • Kait says:

    This is disgusting.

  • tom moore says:

    Now let’s see if we can put an end to this world wide.

  • Anna says:

    Mary had a little lamb. It’s fleece was as white as snow, and everywhere that Mary went, the lamb was sure to go. It followed her to school one day which was against the rule. It made the children laugh and play to see the lamb at school. Little bo Peep has lost her sheep and can’t tell where to find them. Leave them alone and they’ll come home, wagging their tails behind ’em

  • John Moszyk says:

    No more animal experiments.

  • Maureen says:

    It has been awhile since I have read something from Kalama Halamezad. Seems as though you have gotten a little softer side of you. I still think you should do the postmortem analysis and leave animals alone.Even though as you say behind the scenes clinical,you still have no basis unless you kill animals to see the results and again I will reply WHY???? For what purpose are these so called studies for???That’s right the almighty dollar and a promotion for yourself if you agree with some experimenters junk science. Still can’t find a real job!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • tom moore says:

    These experiments must stop now.

  • claire doran says:

    i think its animal cruelty! and should be stopped!!!!!

  • debbie kurth says:

    I have always loved animals. I taught my daughter that every living thing has a right to live and she is an animal lover too. These so called testing done on animals at labs is unnecessary and cruel there are alternatives out there but because of the cost or just plain laziness there not being explored or used. If this was your dogcatgoat etc.taken from you wouldn’t you say something. All around us because of global warming were losing precious species and to harm and destory more animals intentionaly means less animals even domestic. Don’t encourage things to harm the living beauty on our planet

  • Jackie says:

    This is beyond horrible. For some strange reason I decided to look into more detail on the atrocities that were performed in WW2 I don’t know why but I guess it brought me some closure as a Jewish person to feel I really for sure understood just how horrible things were. Well I watched a film by the independant film maker Andrey Iskanov called Philosophy of a Knife which was about the experiments done on people at Unit 731 in Japan and in WW2 Germany. They showed graphic recreations of the experiments so I’m sure it goes without saying it’s not a film most people can watch. Well they had a computer animated recreation of what it would look like if someone died in a decompression chamber. I don’t think it would be proper to go into details but I’ll just say The Bends is hardly the worst of what these poor animals had to suffer through. Also there was very little medically learned from the experiments back then and there’s little to learn from them now. Most of the information on decompression can be learned through research. It’s just beyond me that they’re exposing students to this. It’s like how the nurse in Philosophy of a Knife after witnessing and taking part in the experiments decided to kill herself because she couldn’t live with what she had done. Is that what these “scientists” want for these students? I mean do they really need a psychologist to tell them this is beyond damaging to the human psyche?! It’s sending students out into the world with the same mindset a Nazi follower would have. What the heck is the point? I think one of the most amazing things I’ve learned from watching Philosophy of a Knife is the utter tragedy in that all the experimentation and suffering was utterly pointless it served no purpose. This is the same thing just in a different time. I also just want to mention that Andrey Iskanov has a antianimal cruelty message on his personal MySpace.

  • AAG says:

    I just lost my breakfast reading this! Sheep are so gentle and docile and the U of W is killing them in such a cruel and inhumane manner! All animal experiments are a sham and a scam. If vivisectors weren’t getting large grant monies for their vile activities in the labs they would not be executed. It is all about money. Humans can’t even extrapolate data from a human male to a human femalewe’re too different! Animal experiments are simply animal executions performed violently and with the utmost pain. Only the animals pay dearlywith their lives in agonizing pain! Go vegan it is a moral imperative.

  • Brien Comerford says:

    The cruel inhumane and vile University of Wisconsin is ruining Madison’s reputation as an animal friendly and vegetarian friendly town !

  • Andre Inglis says:

    Most companies that test on animals only do so as a coverup. If someone were to get sick they could say “We tested it on animals and it worked fine.” These days more and more companies are switching to crueltyfree options. There is no need to test on animals and these companies simply cannot afford the blood on their reputation.

  • Kalama Halamezad says:

    Both my company’s hotshot CEO and chief science offer test our devices on themselves behindthescenes long before preclinical studies are done. Most of the time such experiments are unreportable as well as considered scientifically unreliable. Killing the CEO for postmortem analysis isn’t really a feasible option. Random patient suffering from whatever condition usually isn’t willing to step up to the plate early in the product production process either. They’d at least like to hear something like “Yes at this point we are 100 sure that the device will function after implantation.” Getting to that point usually requires a decent amount of trialanderror preliminary testing to identify unpredicted issues and deal with them.

  • Caroline Kropka::Mice Matter! says:

    I believe that such experiments like testing drugs on mice cats dogs etc. are Unethical and should be deemed illegal. Company hotshot test it on yourself instead of our companion animals!

  • Kathy says:

    Animal research is NOT necessary!

  • adara bauman says:

    I believe that animal resurch is nessisary but that it is used to much and that it is being used friviliously. We allready know what decompression does because of human cases that have been closely studied. Why do people feel the need to torment these animals when no more good can come of it? I believe that infinity is in the present therefore such a crime purpitrated in the present is an infinate cruelty!