Newsletter - Animal Writes sm
28 June 2000 Issue

Animal Experimentation
By Marc Bekoff, [email protected]

So, what did you do today?

Last week the American Society of Primatologists met in Boulder. One question that came to mind was how many 1000s of animals are these (and other) researchers responsible for keeping alone in small cages, subjecting to horrible experimental treatments (infecting them with diseases, tinkering with brains, ripping apart youngsters from care-givers to study once again the development of parent-infant bonds and socialization, and get this - studying the effect of different types of music on chimpanzees housed alone) and, yes, "sacrificing" = killing them "in the name of science." It was no surprise that the music study was done at the Coulston Foundation in Alamogordo, New Mexico, a ghastly research prison that's been repeatedly found in violation of the federal Animal Welfare Act. To be fair, there were some very interesting studies on cognition and various aspects of the behavior of free-ranging wild primates.

I also wondered how these researchers tell others about what they do in the course of a normal day. I imagined the following scene. A child asks of a parent: "So, what did you do today?" After getting rid of all the jargon and fluff her parent's response boils down to such statements as: "Oh, I took a monkey from his mother and sibs to see what would happen," "I killed chimpanzees to study drug reactions," "I blinded cats to learn about vision," or "I trained rats first to avoid shock and then didn't allow them to do it, and watched them go berserk, squeal for help, give up, and passively accept the shock." Well, I sure wouldn't miss those mealtime conversations.

Numerous studies have shown how smart and emotional many animals are, and how they deeply suffer from anxiety and pain, so how in the world do some people do what they do - rob animals of their spirits and souls - and then go home and eat? Ah, they're helping humankind. Hmm, do unto others...Oh, I just wonder...

Go on to Warning
Return to 28 June 2000 Issue
Return to Newsletters

** Fair Use Notice**
This document may contain copyrighted material, use of which has not been specifically authorized by the copyright owners. I believe that this not-for-profit, educational use on the Web constitutes a fair use of the copyrighted material (as provided for in section 107 of the US Copyright Law). If you wish to use this copyrighted material for purposes of your own that go beyond fair use, you must obtain permission from the copyright owner.

Home Page




Your comments and inquiries are welcome

This site is hosted and maintained by:
The Mary T. and Frank L. Hoffman Family Foundation
Thank you for visiting

Since date.gif (991 bytes)