Stop Using Live Animals for Medical Training


Target: Jon L. Pryor, Hennepin County Medical Center CEO

Goal: Stop forcing live animals to undergo cruel and sometimes lethal surgeries for medical training purposes.

Hennepin County Medical Center uses hundreds of live sheep and rabbits each year for cruel emergency medical training. Each animal is forced to undergo numerous painful, lethal operations. Over the course of three years, the medical center has systematically sacrificed 450 sheep and 450 rabbits for this barbaric training ritual.

The culmination of the training procedures is a painful, prolonged death for the animal subject as it is tortured at the hands of doctors. Sheep are forced to undergo 20 operations, while rabbits undergo three. Operations inflicted on the hapless animal include skull drilling, draining fluid from organs, and inserting invasive breathing tubes. The life-saving operations for critically wounded humans take on a heinous cast in this horrific exercise in brutality.

This torture in the name of training is unnecessary and outdated. The Hennepin County Medical Center owns an advanced training simulator sufficient to replace live animals for training. The simulator uses human physiology for training, and does not involve hurting anything alive. Despite this in-house resource, the center willfully pushes onward with unnecessary abuse of live animals.

By signing the petition below, you will put pressure on Hennepin County Medical Center CEO John L. Proyer to discontinue the torture of live animals as subjects for medical training at his facility.


Dear Mr. Pryor,

The continuing use of live animals for training at your medical center is completely unacceptable. The use of live animals for medical training is outdated by the advanced simulation system that your medical center possesses. The 300 animals killed to teach medical training are unnecessary. Training on the simulator is considered to be more effective than training on live animals, and nothing gets hurt in a simulation. These slow-bleed deaths forced on sheep and rabbits at the hands of medical doctors is completely outdated in the modern age. The practice has stopped in the vast majority of the nation.

I am urging you to save the 900 live sheep and rabbits that will be killed over the course of a three year period. Please save these animals by using your advanced simulator for training.


[Your Name Here]

Photo Credit: Linda van Klaveren

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  1. use non -animal methods for testing and save great lives today.

  2. discontinue the torture!! of live animals as subjects!! for medical training!! at your facility!! and all facilities on this earth! save these animals by using your advanced simulator for training!! Mr. Pryor

  3. Lisa Zarafonetis Lisa Zarafonetis says:

    Signed & Shared.

  4. Why not you peoples use your own kind for medical training ?!!! Feel the pain n torture yourself !!! Shame on U !!! SICK N CRUEL N LOVELESS !!!

  5. Kae Blecha, OTR says:

    While your students may learn a few rudimentary medical skills from this backward, barbaric practice, they won’t learn compassion. We don’t need MORE arrogant health care professionals. (Been a patient lately?) If you think what you’re doing to animals is cool, I dare you to post it on a billboard in the Twin Cities and then see how the people respond.

  6. It has come to my attention that Hennepin County Medical Center (HCMC) uses live animals in its emergency medicine residency program. Due to the availability of widely used, non-animal alternatives which allow trainees to repeat procedures and hone their skills, it is clear that the use of live animals in this program is totally unnecessary. Furthermore, HCMC is already equipped with a state-of-the-art simulation center that has a full range of high-fidelity mannequins as well as partial task trainers that could provide the resources to replace the use of animals.

    HCMC is one of the few surveyed programs (119 of 135) in the U.S. to still use live animals. All others are human-based for this type of training. I believe that your future emergency department physicians deserve the very best training possible and I bet you do, too. Therefore, I strongly urge you to put an immediate end to this needless and barbaric practice, and instead, give your future physicians the superior means to learn.

  7. Beth Knalfa says:

    MINNESOTA is so behind the times with these issues. HCMC is an embarrassment and sad to say I live here. ):

  8. Gerard FABIANO says:


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