As history shows man has endured and overcome many diseases and illnesses. These diseases have killed many people and caused many to suffer. Most of these diseases have been cured do to man’s medical research. Medical research has improved people’s lives along with increased life expectancy greatly.  These medical breakthroughs have helped mankind in many ways, but in order to achieve these advances in medicine many animals suffered through testing. The practice of using animals such as rats, mice, fish, and birds to experiments have been debated for decades.  Many people for animal testing state develops medical research and are against it argue animal testing is inhumane.  There are many different pros and cons to animal testing itself.

Animal testing has been around since 500 B.C, ancient times, when Aristotle was around.  We wouldn’t be alive today if it weren’t for the advances in the medical field from testing on animals.  There is no doubt that testing on living animals is cruel, but it is necessary.  Over the centuries many people have examined alternative means to animal testing but have found none as efficient.  Although animal testing is cruel, it is needed to develop and experiment with different forms of treatment, protects the safety of people, animals and the environment, to advance scientific understanding, advance the medical field, and lessens human-based experiments.

Without animal research, the medical field would be nowhere as experienced as it is today. Through many researches, the medical practitioners have been able to test the safety of drugs and develop new medicines to cure illnesses and diseases that have not only helped humans and the environment, but animals themselves.  According to the US-based Foundation for Biomedical Research, “Animal research has played a vital role in virtually every major medical advance of the last century – for both human and veterinary health. From antibiotics to blood transfusions, from dialysis to organ transplantation, from vaccinations to chemotherapy, bypass surgery and joint replacement, practically every present-day protocol for the prevention, treatment, cure and control of disease, pain and suffering is based on knowledge attained through research with lab animals.” (Pro test,1)  If vaccines weren’t tested on animals, many animals would have died from diseases such as rabies, hepatitis, and many other deadly viruses. Other positives of animal testing include; some cosmetics and healthcare products must be tested on animals to ensure their safety,  animal testing is also an alternative to human testing, a n animal’s lifespan is short,  relatively few animals are used in research compared to how many we eat per year, and those used in testing are treated with care.

Those against animal testing argue it is inhumane and cruel, and argue alternatives to animal testing must be used. Although it may not seem like experiments are used fairly on animals, there are certain procedures that scientists must follow.  Animal researchers treat animals humanely, both for the animals’ sake and to ensure reliable test results.  Scientists are required to use the principles called the ‘three R’s.   The ‘three R’s of animal research include; Replace the use of animals with alternative techniques, or avoid the use of animals altogether. Reduce the number of animals used to a minimum, to obtain information from fewer animals or more information from the same number of animals. And refine the way experiments are carried out, to make sure animals suffer as little as possible. This includes better housing and improvements to procedures which minimise pain and suffering and/or improve animal welfare.”(understanding, pg2).  Also laws such as the Animal Welfare Act are put into place to protect animals from mistreatment.  Although it is argued that there are alternatives to animal testing, there are no more efficient ones expect testing on humans (which isn’t legal). The genetic structure of humans is very complex and the only other form of testing to humans is animals.  We share 95% of our genes with a mouse, making them an effective model for the human body.  To take away animal research would devastate the lives of humans and animals alike.  We wouldn’t survive without these medical discoveries found in animal research.  Former UK Home Office minister Joan Ryan did an great job of explaining why it is vital; “Animal research and testing has played a part in almost every medical breakthrough of the last century. It has saved hundreds of millions of lives worldwide…”

In conclusion, animal testing is extremely useful for medical advances, and for the safety of humans, animals, and environment as a whole.  Although it is cruel there are no better alternatives. We all hope for a day when animal research is no longer needed, but until then it is vital.

 

Animal Testing – ProCon.org.” Should Animals Be Used for Scientific or Commercial Testing?, Pro Con.org, 2 Nov. 2016, animal-testing.procon.org/.

Pro-Test. “BENEFITS.” Pro-Test: Standing up for Science, Pro Test, 7 Oct. 2012,

“Procedures on Animals.” The Three Rs | Understanding Animal Research, Understanding Animal Research, Mar. 2011, www.understandinganimalresearch.org.uk/how/three-rs/.

 

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4 Comments
  1. Claire 7 months ago

    After researching this topic, I disagree with you. Animal testing is very cruel. They force animals to ingest products to make sure it is safe for humans. At Charles River Laboratories they did this to three dogs and forced the dogs to ingest things. The dogs got a high heart rate and were very cold. “One dog died and the other two were euthanized one to two days later” (1).
    Animal testing is very pointless as well. “More than 90% of experiments fail to lead to treatments for humans.” (2). Stuff that may work in animals does not mean that it is going to work in humans and a lot of it doesn’t. “The history of cancer research has been in the history of curing cancer in the mouse. We have cured mice of cancer for decades and it simply did not work in human beings.” – Dr Richard Klausner, former director of the us national cancer institute. (3)
    Also another reason why animal testing should be gone is because it is useless. A lot of the diseases that humans get animals do not get which makes them not reliable. They have to make the animals get the disease. “For Instance in order to induce Parkinson’s disease monkeys rats or mice are injected with a neurotoxin that destroys brain cells.” (4)
    Another reason why testing on animals should be stopped is because there are other alternatives that are not cruel and do not involve animals. “For example experiments on rats hamsters guinea pigs mice monkeys and baboons revealed no link between glass fibers and cancer. Only after human studies related the two did the occupational safety and health administration label these fibers as carcinogenic. EpiDerm an in vitro test derived from cultured human skin cells was was found to be more accurate in identifying chemical skin irritants than traditional animal tests. In comparison studied EpiDerm correctly detected all of the test chemicals that irritate human skin, while tests on rabbits misclassified 10 out of 25 test chemicals a full 40% error rate.” (5) Also adding onto testing on animals being pointless, “Animals do not get many of the human diseases that people do, such as major types of heart disease, many types of cancer, HIV, parkinson’s disease, or schizophrenia.” (6) So in order for the animals to get these diseases so they can try and find a cure for humans they have to insert stuff that damages them so they get the disease. Therefore testing on animals is cruel, pointless, and there are other alternatives..

  2. Claire 7 months ago

    After researching this topic, I disagree with you. Animal testing is very cruel. They force animals to ingest products to make sure it is safe for humans. At Charles River Laboratories they did this to three dogs and forced the dogs to ingest things. The dogs got a high heart rate and were very cold. “One dog died and the other two were euthanized one to two days later” (1).
    Animal testing is very pointless as well. “More than 90% of experiments fail to lead to treatments for humans.” (2). Stuff that may work in animals does not mean that it is going to work in humans and a lot of it doesn’t. “The history of cancer research has been in the history of curing cancer in the mouse. We have cured mice of cancer for decades and it simply did not work in human beings.” – Dr Richard Klausner, former director of the us national cancer institute. (3)
    Also another reason why animal testing should be gone is because it is useless. A lot of the diseases that humans get animals do not get which makes them not reliable. They have to make the animals get the disease. “For Instance in order to induce Parkinson’s disease monkeys rats or mice are injected with a neurotoxin that destroys brain cells.” (4)
    Another reason why testing on animals should be stopped is because there are other alternatives that are not cruel and do not involve animals. “For example experiments on rats hamsters guinea pigs mice monkeys and baboons revealed no link between glass fibers and cancer. Only after human studies related the two did the occupational safety and health administration label these fibers as carcinogenic. EpiDerm an in vitro test derived from cultured human skin cells was was found to be more accurate in identifying chemical skin irritants than traditional animal tests. In comparison studied EpiDerm correctly detected all of the test chemicals that irritate human skin, while tests on rabbits misclassified 10 out of 25 test chemicals a full 40% error rate.” (5) Also adding onto testing on animals being pointless, “Animals do not get many of the human diseases that people do, such as major types of heart disease, many types of cancer, HIV, parkinson’s disease, or schizophrenia.” (6) So in order for the animals to get these diseases so they can try and find a cure for humans they have to insert stuff that damages them so they get the disease. Therefore testing on animals is cruel, pointless, and there are other alternatives.

  3. Hanna 7 months ago

    After reading your post about Animal Testing, I disagree with some of the things you said. In my opinion animal testing is unnecessary. After researching on this topic I learned that their was research done by PETA a non-profit organization that found that “After three dogs were forced to ingest a test substance every day for five days at Charles River Laboratories, they experienced labored breathing and a high heart rate. They became cold to the touch, were not able to be aroused and were seen with the test substance in their mouths and on their bodies. One dog died and the other two were euthanized one to two days later”(1). This is just one example of what happens during some of these tests. Another example of cruelty is one shown by once again PETA which states that “Animals are infected with diseases that they would never normally contract… experimenters force-feed chemicals to animals, conduct repeated surgeries on them, implant wires in their brains, crush their spines, and much more”(2). This does not yet show fully why animal testing is not necessary but I will get to that after this. I did some more research and found a study done by “Doctors Against Animal Experiments Germany” and this is what they said “There is no need to search for animal-free testing methods to replace such research projects. These animal experiments can be eliminated without substitution, because human data have long been available, or because their results are completely irrelevant to human health”(3). So we don’t need to simply find a substitute for these experiments we just need to stop them completely because they are not causing any influence for human health. In order to do this research they spend very large quantities of money. The Certified B Corporation has found out how much money they spend and what money they are wasting “USA spends sixteen billion dollars annually for animal testing at taxpayers expense and is subject to massive waste and mismanagement of taxpayers dollars”(4). This is a huge amount that is being put towards nothing useful just the curiosity of scientists. So not only is it unnecessary but it is cruel and wasteful.

  4. McKenna 11 months ago

    Hi Luke, I found this to be a very interesting essay. It is so sad to see animals treated poorly for the benefit of us, I understand it is vital to helping everyone though as well. Hopefully soon in the future we can find an alternate way to do this.

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