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Victory! Utah Pound Seizure Stopped

Written by PETA | March 1, 2011

Following PETA’s undercover investigation and an intense year-long campaign, the University of Utah (also known as “the U”) has announced that it will no longer purchase dogs and cats from North Utah Valley Animal Shelter (NUVAS)—or any other animal shelter—to be used in invasive and deadly experiments. Since the U was the last Utah purchaser of homeless animals for use in experiments, this victory means the complete end of “pound seizure” in the state of Utah!

PETA’s shocking investigation at the U in 2009 has prompted a sea change in the treatment of animals in Utah. Until then, public shelters were forced by law to sell animals to the U. Soon after we broke our case, the U was cited for nine violations of federal animal welfare laws, Utah legislators amended the state’s pound-seizure law so that government-run animal shelters could choose not to sell animals for experimentation, and the shelter that was then selling the most animals to the school ended the practice. A PETA lawsuit compelled a city to turn over records of the animals it sold to the U so that the public would know who these betrayed animals were. And who can forget Sheena, the loveable mutt whom PETA helped rescue from the U, where she would have gone under the knife, just in time for Christmas.

Sheena, outside, enjoying the snow.

The U’s decision appears to have already pushed it to find more humane research methods. Instead of repeatedly forcing tubes down shelter cats’ throats in a cruel and crude intubation training course, the scheduled animal laboratory was recently canceled after PETA protests, and modern human-infant simulators were used instead.

Now, animals entering the state’s animal shelters will no longer be betrayed by those who should help them, and Utah residents with missing dogs or cats can at least know that if their beloved animal companions make it to a shelter, they won’t be sold to laboratories, where they would experience lives filled with suffering and grisly deaths.

A huge thank-you to all of you who asked the U and NUVAS to do the right thing by animals. This is a major victory, but there are still too many animals suffering in university laboratories—in Michigan, South Carolina, and Ohio and in both Dallas and Galveston, Texas, just to name a few. So please keep speaking up until every cage is empty. And to help PETA continue to help animals, become a member today!

Commenting is closed.
  • gary scott says:

    great news WEll Done all !!

  • pandora says:

    What absolutely wonderful news! Well done PETA, carry on the good work.

  • audrey says:

    I live in North Utah Valley, and this was my local shelter. I am SO glad they have stopped, for the shelter’s sake and the U. My husband is a U alumnus, and I refused to give any donations to them while they were doing this. I’m also so glad I don’t have to worry about my neighbors’ impounded pets going to experimentation. Now I can be proud again!

  • Tawny says:

    This DOES NOT mean U of Utah has given up their research using dogs and cats. They will continue on with their twisted, sick experiments without interruption. They will simply purchase dogs and cats from other sources.

  • Emilia Ausere Bautista says:


  • Stephen Pratt says:

    Big congratulations to PETA. All the best from Ireland and may you have continued success.

  • Melmac says:

    I actually bothered to read their practices, and frankly, there is some huge exaggerations in your claims on how the animals were treated. As far as the rest of this? – Great, but I would safely say alot of this succeeded from being bullies instead of protesting fairly. I still smell something fishy, and it isn’t the Uni of Utah – especially since the orange cat’s “experiment cap” thing is CGI’ in there. (BTW, I fully expect you to edit out the facts in this comment).

  • nelida says:

    Great news hopefully this has been a learning experience for all institution that do this. no one should be doing this

  • Maru says:


  • Mommie to the Crew (20 cat ferel colony-MI) says:

    Huge congrats to PETA for their continuing efforts to help innocent animals. At least they now have a chnace to find good, loving, forever homes! Now if the U of M wakes up and follows suit that will be big!! Keep on keepin’ on PETA; we are all behind your efforts!

  • Massiell Rodriguez says:

    THANK YOU PETA! If we all work together, we can make a difference! Let’s save more animals!

  • Tripwirestrippin says:

    so whatwill happen to the animals that were there already? i want my rat willard.

  • WilliamE says:

    This a victory for the animals!

  • kelseybest says:

    This is awesome news! Great job everyone!

  • jen t says:

    i am so glad i was a part of stopping this horrible behaviour from the lab yayyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyy… i just so feel so awful for the ones who had to lose there lives though…. so many wonderful lovely dogs and cats…. makes me heart cry for them.. ya safe now at rainbow bridge babies… xxxxx

  • Ya *** Shih says:

    WOW, let’s celebrate! Thank you so much!

  • Marianna Steel says:

    I’m sad every day because of what our wonderful animals go through in this world. This latest news is good to hear, but we have a lot more work to do. Thank God our petitions worked in this Utah case. Yes!!!

  • Liliana says:


  • ConcernedStudent says:

    Finally I can stop being ashamed of attending this university.

  • ConcernedStudent says:

    Finally I can stop being ashamed of attending this university.

  • Bonny says:

    So where can we now write to Utah to THANK them for finally doing the right thing?

  • Jourdain Maddox says:

    Amazing I’m very proud to be a part of PETA may we have more victories like this one down the road.

  • Jourdain Maddox says:

    Amazing I’m very proud to be a part of PETA may we have more victories like this one down the road.

  • jenn says:

    lets not forget about all the other animals being used at other schools.Call/write/email do what you can.Tell one other person and that person will tell one person etc….give them an address or email so they can complain.Eventually we can make this madness illegal.

  • Linda says:

    Thanks to all of us good people that work with Peta and all the groups that care about animals and take ACTION !!

  • mary gail clark says:


  • cristinastirbu says:

    Greaaaat!!!!!!!Congratulations PETA!!!!!Keep fighting.

  • mandy landman says:

    Yay for PETA !!!!!!

  • Daciana says:

    That`s great!I`m wonder if some day,somebody will help the street dogs from Roumania…if will be people able to fight and protect the animals rights.They really need help NOW…

  • Karen says:

    I’m very happy for that! Thank you all!

  • Tami says:

    YEAH!!! I am so glad Utah has stopped being cruel to animals. I hope every one, ever state, and all over the world will stop being cruel to all animals. NO ONE and I mean NO ONE should be so cruel to animals. Thank you

  • Saucy says:

    AMERIJET: FLYING MONKEYS TO THEIR DEATHS! Amerijet is one of the few remaining airlines that transports non-human primates for the research industry, animals destined to be used in painful experiments during which most will die. As recently as November 2010 Amerijet transported primates from the islands of Saint Kitts and Barbados and elsewhere in the Caribbean and South America, to the United States. THe shipments were for companys such as Primate Products inc. and Worldwide Primates that provide primates to laboratories. There are an increasing number of airlines tht were once carriers of primates, but which now refuse to transport primates for the research industry. Airlines that have made this compassionate discision include leading cargo airlines such as Lufthansa Cargo DHL Aviation, as well as major airlines, Delta Airlines, United Airlines, US Airways, British Airways, EL AL and Korean Air. STOP THE MONKEY FLIGHTS! Ask Amerijet to dissociate itself from the cruelty and suffering of the international trade in primates by refusing to transport primates destined for the research industry. David Basset, President and CEO Amerijet International Inc. 2800 S. Andrews Avenue Ft. Lauderdale, Florida 33316 Phone 954-320-5300 E-mail, For more information visit,

  • candlebaby says:

    This is wonderful. I am so happy to hear this. What a beautiful baby.

  • mommieallie says:

    I literally started to jump up and down at this! I’ve been so upset! Yay!!!! Great job Peta and everyone who stood up for these animals!

  • Gevorg says:

    WOW! Very good news. Thank you!

  • Milena says:

    THANK YOU PETA!! Thanks everybody!! I’m from Brazil but I’m doing everything I can to keep helping animals!

  • Geisa says:

    Weeeeeeeee! That’s so nice and I’m so happy.

  • Carol Carvalho says:

    Wonderful news. Let’s keep fighting! A big hug from Brazil to all of PETA

  • vera says:

    thanks for peta !!!

  • Sonia says:

    FINALLY U. UTAH WAKES UP!! It was CRUEL! THANK YOU PETA for making this happen!!

  • Lisa Taylor says:

    SEE….It only starts with one person! Lets strive together to stop animal cruelty in all forms.

  • Tawny says:

    Where did they announce this? I’ve been in touch recently with Dr. Tom Parks, head of the U of Utah lab, via email and he hasn’t told me this. I seriously question this.


    BRAVOS BY THE MILLIONS – RINGING APPLAUSE FOR THE ONE AND ONLY SAINT FOR THE ANIMALS THROUGHOUT THE WORLD INGRID NEWKIRK Do you know INGRID, that one day your name will be inscribedd in G-D’S HOLY BOOK and you will dwell in the MARBLE HALLS of PARADISE on HIS right side for everything that you have done for animals throughout the world.

  • carol says:

    Can you tell me what happened to the ginger and white cat with the hole in the top of his head – I felt so terribly badly for that poor animal?

  • Shana says:

    I think it’s amazing. Sometimes it takes awhile for people to come around. For whatever reason, they changed their minds, it’s a huge victory. People shouldn’t bother posting negative comments. If you hate animals so much, get off PETA.

  • MELMAC says:

    Most likely this is due to budget cuts b/c it took a year for you to “win.”

  • nancy says:

    PETA does great work!

  • chloe vegan says:

    my friend thinks peta owns the farms in the slaughter house videos i go into an un-offical bargin with her tommorow

  • Linda says:

    Let’s now hope the shelters take care of the animals. No need for animal testing…..

  • Annie Patenaude says:

    Wow! 2 Victoires en 1 journée! Bravo PETA et merci à tous ceux qui signent le pétitions!!!