Animal Medical testing

PETA’s action in the US. Lai Seng Sin / AP / Press Association Images (source)

Animal testing, also known as animal experimentation, animal research ,and vivo testing is a use of nonhuman animals in experiments that seek to control the variables the affect behavior or biological system under study.

“Traditional animal testing is expensive, time consuming, uses a lot of animals, and from a scientific prospective the results do not necessarily translate to humans.” -Dr Christopher P. Austin
(source)

According to the US-based Foundation for Biomedical Research, animal research has been very important in medical advancement of the last century for both human and veterinary health. Antibiotics, blood transfusions, dialysis, organ transplantation, vaccinations and many other medicines and procedures has developed based on knowledge attained through research with lab animals.

Effectiveness of Animal Medical Testing

Animal medical testing has been a major issue for a long time and the harmful use of animals in these experiments is not only cruel, but often ineffective. Although some of these experiments has played a major part in medical advancement, most of these experiments go through numerous trial and error, wasting away the lives of the animals that are being tested. Non-human animals do not get many of the human diseases that humans do due to different biological and structural makeups. the effects that medicines or medical procedures can have on non-human animals can be very different than the effects that it has on a human. Non human animals do not get many of the human diseases that humans do due to different biological and structural makeups. The effects that medicines or medical procedures can have on non-human animals can be very different than the effects that it has on a human. Animal medical testing has been a major issue for a long time and the harmful use of animals in these experiments is not only cruel, but often ineffective.

Peta Anti Animal Testing video revealing the vivid images of what’s going on in the lab of animal tesing experiments. (source)

Animal Suffering During Testing

“We connive at the most abominable tortures in the hope of discovering some magical cure for our own diseases by them.” -George Benard Shaw, Man and Superman

The conditions in which the animals are kept during experimentation can be harsh to meet the needs of the experiment. Harsh lab environment causes stress in these animals, and ultimately a lot of pain and suffering.

~ forced chemical exposure

~exposure to drugs

~ genetic manipulation

~food and water deprivation

~skinning and clipping for identification

In (NEAVS) New England Anti-Vivisection society’s online article Harm and suffering Studies show that “mice are capable of empathy and become even more stressed when witnessing other mice in distress… an undercover lab investigation revealed monkeys frantically spinning around and around in their cages, biting open wounds, mutilating themselves, and ripping out their own hair, all because of the chronic psychological distress they must endure.”

These statements alone helps us to understand what these animals are experiencing and feeling during experiments.

Alternatives to Animal Medical Testing

There are other alternatives that can be taken in response to experimentation for medical testing. Test methods such as taking tissues and cultures from people with disease and illness in which the experiment is being conducted on, computerized patient-drug databases and virtual drug trials, computer models and simulations, stem cell and genetic testing methods, where there is no human and non human animal lives at risk. It is easier to conduct experiments on animals but there are other possible alternatives to medical testing. Not only can alternatives to animal medical testing can help preserve the lives of animals but it can also be very beneficial. Agreeing with the information given by NEAVS Alternative scientific tests are can be more reliable than animal tests, using human tissue in toxicity testing is more accurate than the animal models, Non-animal tests are more cost-effective, practical, and expedient, and Cruelty-free products are more environmentally friendly.

(Source)

Reflection

Because we consider the lives of monkeys, rats and guinea pigs as a lower life than ours we feel that it’s ok to use their lives as a way to spare ours. Though some can argue that animal testing is very beneficial we can say that it is, but to the extent where lives of people and animals are sacrificed in order for us to reap these benefits. According to NEAVS, “Science — fueled by the work of scientists themselves as well as by public demand for more humane science — is moving toward the day when cruelty-free research and testing will be the status quo. Science can and must protect animals’ lives, the environment, research dollars, and promote better health and well-being for humans. Science, thanks to modern technologies, is finally moving forward to realize the premise that the ‘“best test species for humans are humans”’ — without harm and with enormous benefit to humans. "As the knowledge of science and technology advances, we should be able to veer away from animal medical testing. If people are unable to view the morally wrong aspect of animal testing, the least those who care about the lives of animal can do is bring the topic to them on the lines of medical advancement. Being doctors and caring about lives and working to save lives, they should also consider the lives of these animals that they are using for experimentation. Every life is precious, whether it is the life of a guinea pig or monkey, or rat or human. We should value them all and seek to preserve all lives, and take the necessary means to accomplish that, first being taking alternatives to animal testing.

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