Animal rights group files complaint after monkey death at OHSU
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Dr. Robert Gibbens
Director, Western Region, USDA
(970) 494-7478
[email protected] 
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Please levy the MAXIMUM FINE against Oregon Health & Science University for their blatant disregard of the Animal Welfare Act when their negligence essentially hung a monkey. Their behavior should NOT be tolerated and MUST be punished to the fullest extent of the law.


Animal rights group files complaint after monkey death at OHSU
From Kale Williams,, Januay 14, 2019

An animal welfare group has filed a complaint with the U.S. Department of Agriculture after the death of a primate at Oregon Health and Science University and other alleged violations.

Stop Animal Exploitation Now, based in Ohio, called on the U.S. Department of Agriculture to fine the university the maximum of $10,000 per animal and infraction, the total of which would exceed $100,000. The group has filed complaints against OHSU previously.

"OHSU's death toll continues to climb without pause," Michael Budkie, executive director of the animal welfare group, said in a statement. "This laboratory has reached new heights of fatal incompetence.”

In October, the animal rights group PETA asked the USDA to shut down animal testing at OHSU.

Nancy Haigwood, director of the Oregon National Primate Research Center at the university said her staff, which includes 18 veterinarians and 11 animal behaviorists, is “committed to the humane, respectful treatment of every animal in our care. For this reason, any accidental death or injury to an animal is distressing to us all.”

She also noted that many of the issues referenced in Budkie’s complaint were addressed months or years ago, when the original incidents took place, and that the university complies with stringent standards according to the Health Research Extension Act and the Animal Welfare act.

The federal agency conducted an inspection of the university’s primate facility in Beaverton in August and found that, in May, a primate had been found in its enclosure “constrained by PVC pipes of a resting perch,” according to the inspection report. A veterinarian immediately began treatment, to which the animal initially responded, but “later developed neurological signs.”

“The (animal) was euthanized based upon the follow-up veterinary evaluation,” according to the inspection report.

In a letter to the USDA, officials from the university said a necropsy of the animal revealed swelling in its neck, “which suggested pressure, but not strangulation.”

The university inspected all of its primate perches and installed safeguards to prevent a similar incident from occurring.

In February, another primate wasn’t given the proper medications after a minor surgical procedure in violation of federal animal welfare protocols.

Budkie noted a number of other violations during the past two years, including two guinea pigs that died after surgery because “anesthetic monitoring was inadequate.” Another primate had its tail amputated after it got stuck between two enclosures, and some animals were found to without water for up to 24 hours at a time.

In 2016, the university was issued a warning by the USDA after a monkey died in an enclosure. In that case, and in each of the other cases, the university made changes, either in training or protocol, to try to prevent further incidents.

Haigwood said the university posted all of its inspection reports online as soon as they are available.

The university keeps roughly a half-million animals for research, mostly rodents and fish. Nearly 5,000 primates are housed at the research center in Beaverton, where researchers conduct a wide range of animal research, including treatment for alcoholism, cardiovascular disease, new cancer therapies and vaccines against HIV, human papillomavirus and tuberculosis.

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