PETA Statement: Temple University Dog Deaths Prompt USDA Critical Violation

For Immediate Release:
October 27, 2020

Tasgola Bruner 202-483-7382

Philadelphia – The U.S. Department of Agriculture recently cited Temple University for failing to provide two dogs held in its laboratories with veterinary care and for allowing a cat to sustain “extensive burns” on the lower part of the body. According to a recently released federal report, the dogs “were found dead in their enclosures” and the cat’s burns “resulted in abscesses.” The dogs had been observed suffering from diarrhea and blood in their feces—but this was not reported to veterinary staff. In 2019, the school used 83 dogs and 60 cats in experiments that caused pain and distress, and in recent years, experimenters at Temple have used dogs in invasive surgeries in which balloon-tipped catheters were inserted into their rectums to induce abdominal pressure and in experimental surgeries in which heart failure was induced. Cats have been used in painful and invasive spinal cord injury experiments.

It’s disgraceful that Temple University’s laboratory staff members are so poorly trained that they don’t even know to report sick animals to a veterinarian or ensure proper post-surgical care. Vulnerable dogs died alone and in pain and a cat sustained painful burns because of the school’s negligence. Last year, the university received more than $80 million in taxpayer money from the National Institutes of Health but didn’t provide these animals with even minimal care. Temple should stop harming animals and redirect all research funds to superior, non-animal methods.

PETA—whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to experiment on”—opposes speciesism, a human-supremacist worldview. For more information, please visit or follow the group on Twitter, Facebook, or Instagram.


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 Ingrid E. Newkirk

“Almost all of us grew up eating meat, wearing leather, and going to circuses and zoos. We never considered the impact of these actions on the animals involved. For whatever reason, you are now asking the question: Why should animals have rights?” READ MORE

— Ingrid E. Newkirk, PETA President and co-author of Animalkind