Feds Confirm Animal-Welfare Violations in San Diego-Based Laboratory-for-Hire

Following a PETA Complaint, BTS Research Is Cited for Violations Involving Dogs, Rabbits, Guinea Pigs, and Monkeys

For Immediate Release:
December 15, 2016

David Perle 202-483-7382

San Diego

Following a PETA complaint based on a whistleblower’s allegations of cruelty to animals at BTS Research (BTS), the San Diego–based laboratory-for-hire that performs often deadly tests on monkeys, dogs, rabbits, guinea pigs, and other animals has been cited by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) for serious violations of the federal Animal Welfare Act (AWA).

The USDA cited BTS for subjecting monkeys to “unnecessary discomfort” by confining them improperly for hours in a restraint chair in which they were forced to maintain “a standing position with their collar fixed in the yoke of the chair.” The agency also cited the laboratory for failing to ensure primates’ psychological well-being, stating that “animals [showed] signs of being in psychological distress,” including “one animal [who] was observed stereotypically circling the enclosure.”

The latest citations mirror a pattern of delinquent behavior: The company has been cited for 13 animal-welfare violations in just the past two years—including failure to provide a dog used in an experimental surgery with adequate veterinary care, failure to provide guinea pigs and rabbits with housing that met even the minimal size requirements specified by the AWA, failure to keep facilities in good repair, and failure on the part of the Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee to carry out its legally mandated responsibilities.

“Animals at BTS are already denied everything that’s natural and important to them and robbed of any semblance of a life. They are locked in cages, poked, prodded, injected with diseases, poisoned with chemicals, and killed,” says PETA Senior Vice President Kathy Guillermo. “We urge companies that contract with BTS to look very carefully at what is happening in this laboratory and consider their options.”

The USDA’s inspection report of BTS and PETA’s complaints are available upon request. For more information, please visit PETA.org.

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