Anti-Vivisection Society (AAVS)
See: B Dealers
The National Institutes of Health (NIH), the largest funder of biomedical research in the U.S., has announced that it will prohibit use of cats from random source dealers (B dealers) starting in October 2012.
Prompted by Congress, a committee of the National Academies of Sciences (NAS) determined in 2009 that using dogs and cats from random source Class B dealers for NIH-funded research was not necessary.
The report also acknowledged the problems with the dealers, which are notorious for violations of the Animal Welfare Act, as reported by AAVS and others.
The NIH is finally implementing the NAS committee’s recommendations.
Unfortunately, the NIH has decided to further delay implementation of a prohibition of dogs from this class of dealers until 2015.
Cats will still be used in laboratories...they will just come from sources other than B dealers...but this is a step forward.
What are Class "B" Dealers?
"B" Dealers obtain animals from random sources; these animals are often stolen pets or strays Class “B” dealers are licensed to purchase and sell animals to research. The law has unfortunately allowed “B” Dealers to obtain animals for re-sale from other “B” dealers, shelters and from persons who have bred and raised the animals themselves.
However, as LCA proved in our historic undercover investigation, “B” dealers routinely violate the law by acquiring animals from fraudulent sources and abusing and neglecting them, as documented in HBO’s “Dealing Dogs”. These animals are often stolen pets, strays or animals obtained under false pretenses and deception through “free to good home” ads. It is virtually impossible to know the true history of an animal acquired by a Class “B” dealer. Each time a Class “B” dealer sells an animal to a research lab, a strong possibility exists that he or she is a lost or stolen family pet.
“B” Dealer Facts
Nearly two million companion animals are stolen each year. Many of these animals are sold to research laboratories, dog-fighting rings or puppy mills, where they are abused and often killed.
Many of these pets find their way to research laboratories through USDA
licensed Class “B” animal dealers. For a $10 fee, anyone can apply for a
USDA Class “B” dealer license.
Class “B” dealers obtain animals from state, county or city owned and operated animal pounds or shelter, (this is called pound seizure), other USDA licensed “B” dealers and various random sources. However, “B” dealers also obtain animals from “bunchers".
Bunchers fraudulently obtain animals through “free to good home” ads, preying on unsuspecting people who can no longer care for their companions. They make promises of a good home and tender care, only to turn around and sell the animals, sometimes the same day, to Class “B” dealers. In attempts to gather as many animals as possible for sale to research institutions, bunchers also frequently steal family pets directly from their owners.