Thursday, November 19, 2009

Did You Know? Shelter Animals Go to Research...

Most people think that shelter animals who aren’t adopted are euthanized. News is this may not always be true.

There are 5 (five) U.S. states that require shelters to send un-adopted animals to research facilities. So if those homeless kitties or doggies aren’t adopted in Minnesota, Utah and Oklahoma they’re sent to research facilities where they’re often subjected to all sorts of research tests. In Iowa and Ohio, un-adopted animals are shipped off for research only if a research facility makes a request.

Thirty other states are also guilty of either permitting shelters to surrender animals for research under certain circumstances, or have no laws concerning the matter, meaning shelters can make the decision on their own.

Aside from the lab work itself, money is the driving force. Utah has an "experimental animals code" that permits shelters to charge researchers a minimum of:
$15 per cat
$20 per dog

Sadly, many shelter animals are killed, whether they wind up in research facilities or not, but don’t these unconditionally loving animals deserve to die without prolonged suffering?

Fifteen states prohibit animal shelters from providing animals for research. They include: California, Connecticut, Delaware, Hawaii, Illinois, Maryland, Maine, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Vermont and West Virginia.

What can you do? Help change the laws. Contact legislators and representatives.
-Take care of your pets, ID them and keep them safely out of shelters!
-Always keep your dog on a leash when it is out on the street.
-Your cat may end up at a shleter if you let him/her out.
-Microchip your pets. If they become lost and wind up at a shelter, staff there can then easily ID them.
-Spay and neuter all pets.
-Volunteer at your local shelter or with an animal rescue group.
Start a letter-writing campaign to stop the abuse of animals used for testing.