Displaying items by tag: undercover investigation

Humane Society of the United States undercover investigation shows plight of dogs in a laboratory being dosed with pesticides and drugs

There are more than 60,000 dogs used annually in experiments at hundreds of labs across the country

WASHINGTON (March 12, 2019) – Today the Humane Society of the United States revealed the results of an undercover investigation at an animal testing laboratory where thousands of dogs are killed every year. The investigation reveals the suffering and death of beagles and hounds used in toxicity tests for pesticides, drugs, dental implants and other products.

Over the span of the nearly 100 days, an investigator documented nearly two dozen short-term and long-term experiments that involved tests on dogs. The Humane Society of the United States investigator saw dogs killed at the end of studies, and others suffering for months including 36 gentle beagles being tested for a Dow AgroSciences pesticide.

Dow commissioned this laboratory to force-feed a fungicide to beagles for a year, with some dogs being subjected to very high doses – so high that up to four capsules had to be shoved down their throats.  Those who survive until the designated end date of the study in July will be killed. Dow has publicly acknowledged that this one-year test is scientifically unnecessary. 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.

Kitty Block, president and CEO of the Humane Society of the United States and president of Humane Society International, said: “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.” 

This investigation was carried out at Charles River Laboratories in Michigan, and this is only a snapshot of what is going on in the U.S. including at for-profit companies, government facilities and universities for various testing and research purposes. The dogs are often provided by commercial breeders -- one of which, Marshall BioResources had more than 22,000 dogs at one facility in June 2018.  

Beagles are used in testing because of their docile nature, which was evident during this investigation conducted between April and August 2018. The Humane Society of the United States shared its findings with Dow and has been negotiating with the company in hopes of securing the release of the 36 dogs in their study.

Video released of the investigation shows workers carrying out experiments on dogs on behalf of three companies – Paredox Therapeutics, Above and Beyond NB LLC and Dow AgroSciences.

Among the beagles tested on, the Humane Society of the United States documented the horrible short life of one dog named Harvey who clearly sought attention by humans and was characterized by the laboratory staff as “a good boy.”

Harvey was being used to test the safety of two substances when poured into the chest cavity in a study commissioned by Paredox Therapeutics that received support from the University of Vermont. Hounds were also used when the protocol called for a larger dog breed, such as a study by Above and Beyond Therapeutics for surgical implantation of a device to pump drugs through the spinal canal. Charles River carried out tests on dogs for at least 25 companies during the time of the Humane Society of the United States investigation.  

Scientific studies have shown that more than 95 percent of drugs fail in humans, even after what appear to be promising results in animals. The Humane Society of the United States is seeking to replace dogs and other animals with more effective non-animal approaches that will better serve humans.  

“It is our obligation to tell the stories of the animals and move science, policy and corporate ethics into the 21st century,” Block added.

 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Undercover investigation exposes shocking, unregulated market for giraffe parts across the United States despite steep population declines

Groups petition U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to protect giraffes and stop the sale of giraffe bones and skins

WASHINGTON (August 23, 2018)—A shocking undercover investigation conducted by the Humane Society of the United States and Humane Society International found giraffe parts and products sold online and in stores by at least 51 dealers across the United States. An investigator went undercover in 21 stores in California, Florida, Maryland, North Carolina, New York, Oklahoma, Tennessee and Texas, as well as at the Dallas Safari Club expo where many more sellers exhibited. 

Kitty Block, acting president and CEO of the Humane Society of the United States and president of Humane Society International, said, “Purchasing giraffe parts puts the entire species at risk. The giraffe is going quietly extinct. With the wild population at just under 100,000, there are now fewer than one third the number of giraffes in Africa than elephants.”

Block notes that killing giraffes for trophies, and using their parts for fashion, knife handles, home décor and trinkets not only shows a complete disregard for this iconic species, but also adds to the major threats causing the species to decline by 40 percent in the past 30 years.

“We urge the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to list the giraffe as endangered under the Endangered Species Act to help combat this trade and reduce population declines before it’s too late,” she said.

Giraffe parts are considered by consumers as a ‘new exotic’ popular in part as an alternative to ivory and other products for which regulations have tightened. The HSUS/HSI investigation reveals a wide variety of giraffe parts and products easily available through wholesalers and retailers in the United States, including a giraffe taxidermy ($8,000), a custom-made giraffe jacket ($5,500), a full giraffe hide ($4,500), a giraffe hide rug ($3,000), a giraffe skull ($500), a knife with a giraffe bone handle ($450), a giraffe leather Bible cover ($400), a giraffe tail hair bracelet ($10) and a giraffe foot ($75). 

Some sellers told investigators that they had received giraffe parts from trophy hunters. Several promised that new giraffe trophies were arriving soon and that they were taking custom orders for products, and others falsely claimed that giraffes were dangerous and needed to be killed to protect African villages.

On average, more than one giraffe per day is imported into the U.S. by American trophy hunters.  Giraffe are targeted so hunters can bring home exotic trophies, and the Africa hunting outfitters who arrange these hunts sell the leftover giraffe parts — skin, bones, feet, tail. The giraffe parts and products are imported into the U.S. and sold by knife makers, purveyors of wildlife curios, bootmakers and others. Increased demand in the U.S. fuels more killing of this already vulnerable species.

Background:

  • ESA listing would restrict the import, export and sale of giraffe specimens in the U.S.
  • Demand for giraffe parts can fuel poaching and trophy hunting, further decreasing giraffe populations already facing severe threats from habitat loss and civil unrest.
  • In 2016, the International Union for the Conservation of Nature elevated the threat status of giraffes from “least concern” to “vulnerable” on its Red List of Threatened Species. Among the nine subspecies, two are deemed “endangered.”
  • From 2006 to 2015, the for commercial purposes. Among these imports were about 21,000 giraffe bone carvings, nearly 4,000 raw bones, about 3,000 skin pieces, almost 2,000 raw bone pieces and more than 700 skins.