Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Common Animal Testing and Vivisection Questions from Students and My Answers to Them: Animal Testing and Vivisection FAQ

Every year, around the same times, we get the same questions from a variety of students around the world doing papers or presentations on animal testing or vivisection. Some are about dissection.

I usually end up responding with what you’ll see below which tend to address these common questions. I’m not saying that I’ve provided the only answers to these questions, but that they cover the basics.

As always, I refer them as well to the GEARI Information on Animal Testing starter web page which lists links to information about everything from alternatives to animal testing to lists of companies that test on animals. http://www.geari.org/animal-testing-information.html This list grows every year however, so what you see below only represents what has been asked up until now. Please excuse the numbers as they usually correspond to what the students ask.

(NOTE: These first three represent the more philosophical questions, or those that the anti-animal groups try to use on unsuspecting students. I love answering these because it shows the students that those questions are stupid and rely on circular reasoning meant to trick them. Hopefully they won’t be fooled again.)

QUESTIONS AND MY ANSWERS:


2. Because animals do not, in theory, have souls, are they still
entitled to rights? It's never been proven that they do not have
souls or that those with rights have souls. So, having a soul is not
the basis for determining what is entitled to rights. Those that try
to use this as an argument have never even proven that humans have
souls or that non-humans do not.
>
> 3. Do animals have emotions similar to humans or do they just have levels of comfort? It's been well proven that non-human animals express emotions (and feel them) via animal behavior scientists. Perhaps the most famous is Marc Bekoff - Professor Emeritus of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology at the University of Colorado, Boulder, and is a Fellow of the Animal Behavior Society and a former Guggenheim Fellow. Please see his works to learn more: http://ebio.colorado.edu/index.php/people-faculty/people-emeritus?view=employee&id=41 orhttp://literati.net/Bekoff/ or http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/bloggers/marc-bekoff
>
> 4. Because animals cannot give consent to what is being done to them, is it acceptable to test on them? Giving consent is not justification for testing or not testing. Put another way, a person may be unable to speak or even think, so they cannot give consent. But, following logic, this does not mean that it is then OK to test on them.


Here are the other answers I've produced for others and you may be able to use:


1. In your professional opinion, does animal experimentation
present more positives or negatives?

Absolutely, negatives.
Animal testing is unnecessary and is a waste of resources.
Alternatives exist which are superior and relate more to human
physiology. For more on why animal testing is unnecessary and
wasteful see http://www.pcrm.org/resch/anexp/index.html

2. What, in your opinion, is the most positive thing about
animal testing? Absolutely nothing positive about it. As I just
stated, it's a waste of resources that actually ends up affecting
human health in a negative way.

3. What, in your opinion, are the most negative factors of animal testing?
As I mentioned in question 1, it is a waste of research dollars as the
tests are ineffective. I'll refer you to another

I need to refer you to a few additional websites that mention how
animal tests are ineffective and waste resources. Also, they are
unreliable and dangerous. Please see
http://www.pcrm.org/resch/anexp/LD50.html

http://www.pcrm.org/resch/anexp/dangerous_med.html

http://www.navs.org/site/PageServer?pagename=ain_sci_science_future&AddInterest=1021

http://www.navs.org/site/PageServer?pagename=ain_pt_animal_tests

4. Do you believe animal experimentation is acceptable when
viewing it from a medical standpoint?

No. After you read the links above, you'll see why.

5. Do you think animal experimentation has had an impact on the
medical advancements made thus far?

No. As I've said, we've actually missed out on important discoveries
because animal tests are so unreliable.

6. Do you feel the alternatives to animal experimentation
provide adequate and sufficient information?
Absolutely, and so does Johns Hopkins University. You can learn more
about non-animal testing methods at The Johns Hopkins Center for
Alternatives to Animal Testing (CAAT) http://caat.jhsph.edu/

7. What types of issues does animal experimentation present financially?

Again, they waste financial resources. You'll see that as you visit
the links above.

8. What do you think testing alternatives would do for the cost
of animal experimentation, and why?

As you'll read at The Johns Hopkins Center for Alternatives to Animal
Testing (CAAT) http://caat.jhsph.edu/ the costs will decrease.

9. Do you believe the controversial issue of animal
experimentation will ever cease to exist?

Yes. Many of these issues just need to be talked about and evidence
shown in order for them to change. You can already see that these
issues have come to the front in recent years. Many people and
organizations are changing daily. Plus, with respected groups like
The Johns Hopkins Center for Alternatives to Animal Testing (CAAT)
putting forth the truth on alternatives, it's only a matter of time
that all groups will follow their lead.

10. What would you suggest be done to solve the debate of animal
experimentation?

People just need to educate themselves to the truth of these issues.
After you read the links above, you'll be 10 steps ahead of where you
are now, as you'll realize that animal experimentation is fully
unnecessary.


What kinds of alternatives would be good ideas for animal testing?

We have an excellent page on alternatives to animal testing at:
http://www.geari.org/alternatives-to-animal-testing.html That page
will provide all you need to know on the issue. In summary, quite a
few worthy alternatives exist.



2. How harmful is the medication to the animals?

Every animal gets very sick when exposed to the testing. Most are
killed based on the test. So, 100% will be sick, as what they are
exposed to is designed to make them sick.

An excellent page that speaks of these issues can be found at
http://www.navs.org/site/PageServer?pagename=ain_pt_testing_main



3. How many animals are used each year?

According to this excellent page –
http://www.navs.org/site/PageServer?pagename=faq_main

"It's impossible to say exactly how many, but the number is estimated
at tens of millions of animals on an annual basis. The vast majority
of the animals used—about 90 percent—are rats and mice specifically
bred for the purpose of laboratory research."




4.What kinds of effects does the medication have on the animals?

Every animal gets very sick when exposed to the testing. Most are
killed based on the test. So, 100% will be sick, as what they are
exposed to is designed to make them sick.

An excellent page that speaks of these issues can be found at
http://www.navs.org/site/PageServer?pagename=ain_pt_testing_main


5. Where do scientists perform the testing?

Unfortunately, this type of testing is carried out in nearly every
type of environment. The largest two settings are in pharmaceutical
companies and within business such as Proctor and Gamble, Johnson and
Johnson and the like. Another setting that does a significant amount
of testing is at universities. Unfortunately though, the government
carries out a large amount of testing as well as do charities.

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