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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.
  • Jen says:

    Awesome news!


    stop animal cruelty

  • Holly says:

    Unfortunately, this is only a tiny victory. This sick so-called “educational” insitution will continue to do animal testing, just not on animals bought from shelters. God knows where they’ll get them, probably have people stealing family pets. Animal testing is the most colossal form of WRONG that there ever could be. Anybody that works in a laboratory is as sick, twisted, and disgusting as the people who decide what experiments to do on these animals. Such a waste of lives, suffering, and money.

  • Rebekah Guzman says:

    I am currently a senior in hight school and untill I stumbled upon this website I did not know what career I wanted to persue. now I know with out a doubt in my mind that I want to go to law school and work with PETA on cases like this. I want to end vivisection!!!!

  • Gwendolyn says:

    Please STOP ANIMAL CRUETLY !!!!!

  • Clara2007 says:

    Please let’s all learn to love them!and stop cruelty them

  • CaliKarlie says:

    We need more great victorys like this 🙂

  • Maureen Vidal says:

    Innocent animals must be protected. It is up to us to do so.

  • Leena Rana says:

    We are not human if we don’t act like human.I think we are worst then the animals coz they even revert to our love and we don’t even try to.

  • Pauline Erera says:

    PLEASE stop animal cruelty. Animals suffer and hurt exactly like us. Please have heart and compassion.

  • martine desplanques says:

    stop animal cruelty

  • martine desplanques says:

    stop animal cruelty

  • MOON says:

    I want you to stop it early.

  • PetLover says:

    Its really sad. I want to work for Peta someday to try and help end animal cruelty.

  • annamay says:

    stop animal cruelty

  • marie farrugia says:

    pourquoi autant de cruauter envers les animaux ? que vous on t’ils fait au juste ? je n’est jamais vue un refuge aussi scandaleu ! livré des animaux innocents aà la soufrance ?! ce n’est pas une solution !!! j’espére bien que vous le regraterai un jour . non ! je le souhaite !

  • grady says:

    we need more victories like this for the voiceless.

  • maedeh b says:

    stop animal cruelty

  • Shannon says:

    I have posted videos sent to me by PETA on my FB page, showing the absolute horror and torture that dogs, cats, and primates must endure. I see no difference between these “people” and the Nazis during the Holocaust. This MUST stop!

  • Jadelska says:

    That is wonderful!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Jadelska says:


  • Louise Birkett says:

    Viscious and cruel

  • Chaina says:

    I didn’t see the video that some people mentioned. I had seen the results of the horrors first hand as a young teen in the mid 60’s. My brother worked at Harvard Med School in Cambridge,MA where they did the experiments. I would go visit him and he’d try to freak me out my showing me cats with dogs eyes in them and dogs with vocal chords slit tied down in all stages of being tortured. They got most of the cats and dogs from the well known Angell Memorial Animal Hospital which was almost next door. People would drop unwanted animals there thinking they would be put up for adoption-but-they would go in the front door and right out the back to the ‘researchers’ at Harvard. I truely hope that Utah will make sure that ‘pound seizue’ it outlawed. It should have happened decades ago.

  • Mariette Eriksson says:

    how can anyone whos called them selvs human do things like this…

  • Priya Tuli says:

    ‘Human’ beings? Is this what it means to be ‘human’? How perverse that the word ‘humane’ derives from our species, undoubtedly the cruelest on the planet. Change is coming, and soon; more and more people are standing up for animal rights. This gives me hope. Speak out for animals every chance you get; the louder our voice, the sooner things will change. We DO have the power to make a difference, each one of us. @SarahPablo, I salute you and other young people like you. “I am a young girl and I watched the video and instead of crying I want to make a change.” Wow. YES. You go, girl!!!

  • Bernadette says:

    I cannot believe there are so many evil heartless human beings in this world. They make the world absolutely disgusting! I pray Lord Jesus comes back as soon as possible to end this inhumane torture to these innocent helpless angels. UNBELIEVABLE!!! I WOULD LIKE TO BE ABLE TO CONFRONT THESE EVIL ANIMAL ABUSERS AND TORTURERS.

  • cheryl says:

    How do you people sleep at night??? I really do like to believe in karma after reading/seeing things like this. Animals are part of nature, as are humans. We seem to forget that sometimes. We are so eager to kill and destroy without a second thought. Very, very sad.

  • V. Watson says:

    WHAT A DISGRACE & SHAME. You can tell a lot about a government by how they treat the nation’s animals. All animals should be equally protected whether they are a pet or not. These animals are denied the very essence that we as humans take for granted. Animals do not deserve the “unnatural and unpleasant lives” that humans bestow on them.

  • Francesco C. says:

    Hopefully people soon realize that ALL animals deserve respect: this would also mean that they should not be eaten.

  • Cecilia says:

    It is a wonder medications never solve anything, we are not animals!Animals bodies don’t fuction like humans. It’s barbaric, cruel, inhumane.

  • skyway says:

    This was one of the most disgusting things I have seen animals endure.

  • Jesus is Savior says:

    What is peoples problems?! Heartless.

  • Jessica says:

    Thanks everyone who contributed to helping these poor dogs!!!! We can do it!!! for animals! for inoccent little creatures who need us for our voices!!! thanks a million!!

  • Mandagu says:

    I can’t believe that there are parents out there willing to “put the blinders” on their kids. My son is 5, I explain things to him in an age appropriate manner. Of course I’m not going to have him watch the graphic videos but I refuse to let my son be ignorant to the cruel ways of this world. Cruelty to any animal from the labs to the circus is absolutely unacceptable! If any parent allows their child to watch the graphic videos, the parent is the one who needs to get their skills in check.

  • SarahPablo says:

    @Liliana Isabel is this your idea of a better world? To just pretend that bad stuff is make-believe, while it happens in front of you? I am a young girl and I watched the video and instead of crying I want to make a change.

  • Liliana Isabel says:


  • Judith says:

    The University of Utah and other universities should look at the ethics of their use of all animals, not only shelter animals, in experimentation.

  • Tammy Robertson says:

    I am in tears, my heart and soul are torn a little more… This is absolutely unbearable!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! How do these people live with themselves??????? I am sicked to my very soul!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Buddy P. says:

    Shame on those who would send innocent animals to suffer invasive procedures. Shame on those who would do invasive procedures to innocent animals. God bless those who work to stop those “people” & end cruel practices.

  • Tina says:

    What happened to Chance, Rufus and Cloe?

  • Diana ze Szczecina says:

    Błagam niech ten świat się zmieni i przestaniemy w końcu masowo torturować inne gatunki.. bo przyjdzie czas że zostaniemy na tej planecie sami.. :(;(

  • Debra Beatty says:

    One step at a time. Thanks Peta!

  • David Burke says:

    I truly believe that when we (us humans) meet our maker we are going to be judged by how we treated the animals that coexist with us on this planet.

  • Fer R. says:

    We can do it if we’re together!

  • Renata Raymundo says:

    stop now!!

  • Kamila says:

    thanks for you Peta and for the universty of Utah

  • Doiti says:

    Hearing the positive news about the N. Utah Animal Shelter has really lifted my spirits and made me feel glad I took the time to write a petition letter. Sometimes when you feel tired and Peta email you to protest it is an effort. However, on hearing this news, it makes me realise how important it is to support Peta in any way we can, even if it’s just letter writing.

  • Jesus says:

    Please don´t use cats and dogs in invasive and deadly experiments

  • Deborah Stewart says:

    Free at last! Thank You PETA!

  • Erika says:

    Sheena you are very beautiful.