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Feds Cite Military Contractor for Goat Abuse

Written by PETA | October 4, 2012


We have two hot developments to report in PETA’s campaign to expose and end the abuse of animals in cruel and archaic U.S. military medical training drills: Following complaints filed by PETA about the abuse of goats seen in a shocking undercover video, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) has cited military trauma training contractor Tier 1 Group for violating the Animal Welfare Act, and the Virginia Beach Zoning Administration (VBZA) has warned the owner of the property where the training allegedly took place that these exercises are not permitted there.

Originally posted July 27:

Teaching Heartlessness

In April, PETA released the video footage taken by a whistleblower during a trauma training session for members of the U.S. Coast Guard. The video showed course instructors with Tier 1 Group repeatedly cutting off the limbs of live goats with tree trimmers, stabbing the animals with scalpels, and cutting into their abdomens to pull out their organs as they twitched, moaned, and kicked. Veterinarians who viewed the video confirmed that these are signs that the goats were not adequately anesthetized and were likely feeling pain.

The video also showed a course instructor from Tier 1 Group who cheerfully whistled as he cut the legs off goats as well as Coast Guard participants who joked about writing a song about mutilating the animals.

Intolerable Cruelty

At the time the video was released, PETA filed a number of complaints with authorities, and two of these agencies have now taken disciplinary action against parties responsible for the training. (A U.S. Coast Guard investigation into PETA’s complaint is ongoing.)

The USDA citation for violating the federal Animal Welfare Act was issued because of Tier 1 Group’s failure to give adequate anesthesia to the goats who were stabbed and cut into. This is a repeat violation, as Tier 1 Group was cited by the USDA for a similar violation last year.

The USDA’s citation of Tier 1 Group for failing to anesthetize animals properly during invasive procedures is made even more alarming by the fact that just days after the USDA citation, the U.S. Navy awarded Tier 1 Group a contract worth nearly $2 million to conduct 24 trauma training exercises on live pigs. A company that has violated federal animal welfare law should not be rewarded with millions of tax dollars.

The VBZA letter not only warned that such exercises aren’t permitted but also notified the property owner that legal action may be pursued against him if such unauthorized activities are conducted on the land in the future. These unlawful training exercises have taken place there for years, but officials have now made it clear that they must not occur there ever again.

What You Can Do

Please join PETA and its dedicated supporters—including military veterans Oliver Stone and Bob Barker—in urging the military to replace these cruel animal laboratories with humane and advanced human-patient simulators.

Commenting is closed.
  • yinnyang10 says:

    If you look at the citation it is not for the incident in Virginia beach! Nothing really came of this after all of the hard work to acquire this heartbreaking video.

  • Linda Williams says:

    This is dreadful and disgusting that anyone could treat animals like this. May they rot in hell where they belong!

  • Jessica says:

    Imagine what the goat is going through. A real life horror movie. Whoever ordered this torture needs to be in prison for life. These goats are innocent.

  • nivy says:

    i hope those people die a horrible death. this is just HORRIBLE on all levels

  • Siraganda says:

    Thank you thousand times Peta and Oliver Stone for acting in the name of the innocent animals! What a horrific crime and a shame for humanity! May the responsible go to hell!

  • Anna Chalmers says:

    I thought people went to jail for this type of abuse. There is something evil about people that could do something like that. I and many many other people are becoming more and more ashamed of this county. What in the world is going on with people today. The secret serv. having call girls while on assignments. What a JOKE. Now I see this and I got to wounder, just how many more people like that do we really have in our armed forces? What rank authorizes this type of thing? To laugh about it while the poor animal is suffering SPEAKS VOLUMES.

  • Kelly says:

    This is so sickening. What type of horrible people could do that. Hell is waiting for them and that is real.

  • Natasha says:

    What discusting, deplorable, despicable excuses for human beings! How can one conceive that animal torture and mutilation can contribute to any purposeful life-saving skills for humans? This needs to stop immediately… what right do these barbarians have for even considering this as a necessary part of training? The callousness and cruelty these innocent animals experienced goes above and beyond insanity-I can only hope & pray that these evil ill-minded people get their just desserts one day here on Earth AND in Hell….shame on them!!

  • Cynthia Mattera says:

    Imagine the pain that poor gota is in while they rip out his insides, and the guys is whisling…What the hell is wrong with people? Animals feel pain just like we do. I think they should throw the instructoron the table, and do the same things to him…an eye for an eye! Sorry, this makes me very upset! This poor animal is in agony, and no one is helping releive his pain. This is sick!

  • david caracappa says:

    President Obama,,,are you aware of these barbaric practices?

  • Judy says:


  • DF says:

    The Coast Guard is not the only service to use live animals in their “training”. I know from experience the USAF Survival School uses a “bunny” farm outside of Fairchild AFB to supply their need for simulating catching/killing an animal in the wild during the land survival course. It was the most gut wrenching experience to have to take this innocent creature out with us, feed it, care for it until the time in the course where the instructor chose one if us to properly whack the rabbit on the head to stun, kill –then eat it. While some took great glee in the killing, I know deep down it just didn’t sit right with most but no one wanted to say anything for fear of being laughed at, flunk, etc. It still haunts me that I had to do such a thing in the name of training. Please, let’s all do our part to ensure another animal doesn’t have to suffer at the hands of military training.

  • James says:

    I Guess I am not as nice as the rest of you guys,,,This is what I have to say,,May the individuals involved in the barbaric,cruel torture of these beautiful animals ROT IN HELL for what they have done Just Plain Sick S.O.B’s

  • Erika says:

    I’m sure his wife & kids if he has any get healthy doses of abuse as well. It’s never “just a goat” or “just a cat” or “just a dog” with people like this.

  • Lisa says:

    This is dispicible and down right WRONG why can’t we all live together why this constant animal abuse ???? Please DO THE RIGHT THING !!!

  • Sandy says:

    Agree with Keith “don’t say following orders.” Anyone who participated in this IN ANY WAY should go through some heavy duty psychological testing. After that, get lost, and have some real professionals do the training. And the Navy paid them $2MM for vivisected live pigs? I used to be proud of our military, but now …

  • keith says:

    Awful stuff indeed but surely the people on these trauma exercises should have the right to refuse or take part ! or are they themselves somehow enjoying this blood and cruelty lust ” You decide,” and don’t say following orders.. please !