Skip to Main Content

PETA Sues UW-Madison for Allegedly Violating Public Records Law

Written by PETA | April 6, 2010


Yesterday, PETA filed a lawsuit against the University of Wisconsin–Madison (UW) for alleged violations of the Wisconsin Public Records Law. UW has refused to provide PETA with information related to the university’s invasive and deadly taxpayer-funded eye-movement experiments on monkeys and cats. UW completely denied PETA access to some records, such as videos of experiments and complaints about potential violations of the law, and redacted important information from other documents that were provided.

In the experiments, holes are drilled into animals’ skulls; recording chambers and restraint posts are bolted to their heads; electrodes are inserted into their brains; and stainless steel coils are implanted in their eyes. Some cats have even had their ears cut off. Monkeys and cats are typically immobilized in restraint devices in dark rooms for hours at a time and coerced into following visual or auditory targets with their eyes. At the end of the experiment, many of the animals are killed, and their brains are removed and dissected. UW continues to conduct these experiments despite their inherent cruelty, irrelevance to human health, and the fact that safe, sophisticated, and accurate human-based methods for studying brain activity related to eye movement are available and can take measurements down to the single neuron.

UW has a horrendous history of violating federal animal welfare laws, and the school’s refusal to release public information makes it extremely difficult if not impossible to track patterns of animal abuse and noncompliance.

And there’s plenty of reason to be concerned. It was recently revealed that last year, the university suspended Michelle Basso, a vivisector who conducts eye-movement experiments on monkeys, because of her long history of abusing and neglecting monkeys—a history that dates back to 2003. Basso repeatedly performed sloppy surgeries that caused brain damage and bleeding, ignored advice from veterinarians, and left sick and injured animals unattended and untreated. Not only did it take UW six years to take serious action, but even after all that, Basso has had her permission to experiment on animals reinstated. And who can forget UW’s illegal killing of sheep in painful decompression experiments?

There are thousands of animals’ skeletons in UW’s closet, and we intend to shed light on them all.

Written by Logan Scherer

Commenting is closed.
  • Deb Dhillon says:

    To think I once brought my cat there to save its life at the vet school. Had I known that they were doing such cruel things I would never have gone. It makes me sick to read about such cruelty. Who are these people? Do they go home to families, children and pets at night? How can they live themselves? For any cruel experiment mankind can devise, I feel they first subject themselves to it once and then decide after they experience it if they want to subject other living creatures to it. UW-Madison I won’t bring anymore of my pets for you to save their lives when you so cruely take others. I don’t want your tainted blood on my pets.

  • Jelly says:

    I can understand why we need animal testing in some cases it does help us understand the way living things work so that we can apply that knowledge to human treatment but this is straight out sick. It is disgusting that these things go without punishment this uni sounds like it has a reputation for this sort of thing how can it be allowed to carry on with the repulsive things they are doing? Animals do not deserve to be treated like this animals that could be living alongside us with no problems we should learn from the way they live not the way their brains make their eyes move. Actually quite ashamed that I’m living in a world that is doing this.

  • Tahnee-Jae Lopez-Vito says:

    Why this kind of sadistic cruelty is still being carried out is extremely disheartening. If UWMadison and anyone else for that matter cannot see the serious damage and immorality in these animalbased experiments then governments need to rethink about the issue of deterrence as it obviously isn’t working. Keep up the good work PETA! I am have been and will forever support the great work you do.

  • Alba Vasconcelos says:

    These people should be obliged to perform many years of work at animals shelters or go to jail.

  • Stanley Jones-Umberger says:

    Health care “reform” should have outlawed all animalbased experiments and testing but Obama and Congress are slave traders. Obama’s minuscule and purely cosmetic “changes” won’t save soulless America from its downward selfdestructive spiral into oblivion.

  • Kristina says:

    …Thanks PETA for being their Champion It’s really so sad to think that we are living in a cruel and heartless world that has become filled with people seeking disposable combustive relationships fast foods and little regard for the Earth or animals the live here. Only with through the efforts like PETA will changes be made possible. I for one am there.

  • Kathleen says:

    When I read and hear about things like this it makes me so angry and sad at the same time I feel so terrible that these poor animals are being subjected to this and that there is nothing that we can do the people who perform these crimes in the name of “science” have no soul Im not even sure if they are human! I hope they burn in hell for all eternity! POS

  • Caroline Kropka says:

    After reading this I watched the “Testing… 1 2 3” video again. I almost vomited. These “people” at UWMadison should be forced to undergo this cruelty once for every animal they kill when they die and hopefully go to hell. It disgusts me!

  • romola hunter says:

    Peta you do such great work you are supported by all the animal lovers you’re amazing. People have to be responsible for their actions.

  • Rhonda says:

    This is sickening. People can be so cruel and just think about themselves and what is important to them even if it means hurting innocent animals. This is 2010′ when is this kindof insanity going to end.

  • Kelly Lowry says:

    I can’t find words right now to articulate the feeling I am feeling right now I’m eve finding it hard to type as my body is shaking and tears flow down my face. WHY? How can ANY human do this to and living thing? Let alone to innocent animals and domestic animals HOW CAN THEY? Is there an emotional caring soul removal process these individuals go through before they are even able to perform such acts against any living creature. THIS IS A CRIME AGAINST ANIMALS its sadistic sociopathic behavior and should be punished. If these individuals are not prosecuted what’s next? What acts will they perpetrate against humanity? This behavior is a stepping stone ITS AGAINST HUMAN NATURE to be able to do such cruel unmerciful acts.

  • Andre Inglis says:

    One day this will all be abolished

  • Sarah says:

    Please stop the cruelty!!!! Good luck on judgment day!!!

  • Leslie says:

    I can’t believe they can stand to do such inhumane experiments on these cats and monkeys. This needs to be stopped now. They need to imagine being what horrific pain and horror these animals go through. It is not fair.

  • kris shulfer says:

    Completely inhumane and not necessary!!! well i hope the one’s that are doing the killing do not sleep at night!!! i wonder if they have families and if their children know what they do??? just a thought…

  • AJ says:

    Thank you for all your hard work and compassionate efforts PETA. I will forever support you!

  • Agnieszka Odachowska says:

    Stop cruelty!!

  • Jenny says:

    So what can the federal government to bring them into compliance? What can we do to help them understand they could use a more humane method

  • Jeanette says:

    This is sick…some people do not even deserve the air they breath! Good Luck finding out everything you need to know to shut these idiots down!

  • Christina says:

    UGH…I feel sick to my stomach. This is absolutely disgusting cruel and barbaric. I can’t believe experiments on animals are still taking place today. Even further I can’t imagine how anybody could ever do such torture on a poor innocent beautiful creature. This needs to be stopped NOW!

  • Carla* says:

    You SUBhumans need to get a taste of your own medicine!! Down with UW and all those sick twisted vivisectors!! They use their “status” as a green light to torture and murder the innocent!! I wish we can dig a 100 foot hole and throw them all in there!! And then cover it with cement!!