Update: In response to the complaint filed by PETA, the USDA cited Southwest Foundation for Biomedical Research for two violations of the Animal Welfare Act.
A worker at the Southwest Foundation for Biomedical Research (SFBR) in San Antonio was hospitalized with cuts and scratches on Monday after he was attacked by two baboons. The primates reportedly escaped from a holding pen and jumped the guy while he was cleaning cages. (My guess is that they were looking for the keys, but that’s just my personal theory.) PETA has filed a complaint with the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) pointing out that violations of the Animal Welfare Act may have led to the attack.
This wouldn’t be surprising. In 2009 and again in February 2010, the USDA cited SFBR for failing to house animals in structurally sound enclosures to prevent them from escaping and injuring themselves and others. In one incident, a monkey escaped from a cage and got outside into the freezing cold, where he suffered from hypothermia and later had to be euthanized.
As I’m sure you’re aware by now, “biomedical research” is code for “animal torment.” For instance, at SFBRC, female animals are impregnated and their preterm babies are cut from their bodies, killed, and dissected. Other animals are infected with hepatitis, and some are fed diets that consist of 40 percent lard in order to induce obesity and heart disease.
Sadly, the baboons’ decision to visit some karmic justice on the lab worker prevented them from making a successful bid for freedom, and they were quickly returned to the
cells cages. However, considering the tragic outcome of another Texas jailbreak (a chimpanzee was shot and killed in 2008 after escaping from the University of Texas Keeling Center), maybe it’s a good thing that those baboons didn’t get their fingers on the keys after all.
Written by Alisa Mullins