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Humane Society to lab: Adopt out the beagles you're experimenting on instead of killing them after tests

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ARLINGTON, Va. (CIRCA via WJLA) — The Humane Society of the United States is asking a lab in Michigan to adopt out dogs that it claims are killed after experiments.

HSUS claims beagles and hounds that are used in toxicity tests for pesticides, drugs, dental implants and other products at a lab in Michigan are suffering and dying.

An HSUS investigator documented nearly two dozen short-term and long-term experiments and claims they saw dogs killed at the end of studies, and others suffering for months including 36 gentle beagles being tested for a Dow AgroSciences pesticide.

HSUS says Dow commissioned the laboratory to force-feed a fungicide to beagles for a year, with some dogs being subjected to very high doses. Those who survive until the designated end date of the study in July will be killed. This investigation was carried out at Charles River Laboratories in Michigan.

The animal rights group says Dow has publicly acknowledged that this one-year test is scientifically unnecessary and adds the United States government eliminated this test as a requirement more than 10 years ago and nearly all countries throughout the world have followed suit through efforts that have been led by Humane Society International in cooperation with members of the industry, including Dow.

“The disturbing findings at this facility are sadly not unique. Experiments are happening at hundreds of laboratories each year throughout the country, with more than 60,000 dogs suffering. But that does not have to be the fate for these 36 beagles. For months, we have been urging Dow to end the unnecessary test and release the dogs to us. We have gone to considerable lengths to assist the company in doing so, but we simply cannot wait any longer; every single day these caged dogs are being poisoned and are one day closer to being killed. We must turn to the public to join us in urging Dow to stop the test immediately and to work with us to get these dogs into suitable homes,” says Kitty Block, President and CEO of the Humane Society of the United States and president of Humane Society International.

Dow emailed a statement to Circa partner WJLA:

"We conduct animal testing only when such testing is mandated by regulatory authorities and we proactively engage with government officials about minimizing or ceasing animal studies, where possible.

"We have been working closely with the Humane Society of the U.S. for many months to encourage Brazil’s Agência Nacional de Vigilância Sanitária (ANVISA) to amend its animal test requirements for pesticides. Once we are given certainty that the requirement is no longer required, we will stop the study immediately. Corteva Agriscience™, Agriculture Division of DowDuPont, is committed to animal welfare and the 3Rs (Replacement, Reduction and Refinement) as core principles of toxicological research. In the interim, we continue to ensure that where regulations require the use of animals, all applicable welfare guidelines, laws, regulations and licensing requirements are met."

WJLA reached out to Americans for Medical Progress based in Washington, D.C. in regards to the HSUS investigation and AMP emailed:

"All Americans love animals which is why we are naturally conflicted when we see images of animals in labs. At the same time, we simply cannot forget that animals play an irreplaceable role in health research. Humans and animals are impacted by many of the same diseases. Therefore, studying them helps us develop treatments that can be used in both human and veterinary medicine. 95 percent of all animal research involves rodents, but in very rare cases, dogs must be studied. When viewing this video, it’s important to note what we do see and what we do not. We see employees dedicated to ensuring animals are treated with respect and kindness. We do not see abuse or mistreatment. We should also not forget that this video was shot and edited by an organization with an agenda.

"Perhaps the biggest lesson learned from this video is the recognition that Americans need to better understand how new treatments are developed. The science community must do more to help the public realize the critical role of animal studies in combating serious diseases. We also need to demonstrate the tremendous efforts taken to ensure that lab animals are treated well."

Charles River Laboratories provided the following statement:

"Charles River Laboratories operates our facilities in a way that is consistent with our commitment to the welfare and ethical treatment of the animals in our care and in compliance with all federal regulations and international standards. As animal caregivers and scientific researchers, we are responsible to our clients and the public for the health and well-being of the animals under our stewardship, and we strive to fulfill that responsibility on a daily basis."

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