Target: Chairman of the Committee on Agriculture, Frank D. Lucas
Goal: End the unethical purchase of animals for testing purposes
Though the Animal Welfare Act has done a lot to reduce pain and suffering for animals used in research, more needs to be done to ensure that researchers are not taking animals from unethical sources. Currently the Act requires that research facilities and distributors must be licensed, but a new bill would allow researchers to only use animals for testing that come from licensed dealers, registered pounds or shelters, and donations from breeders or owners that have owned the pet for at least one year. Though it’s not an elimination of animal testing by any means, strictly regulating the ways that researchers can get animals is a step in the right direction for animal health and safety.
As the Animal Welfare Act stands now, the places that researchers can get animals from are not strictly outlined. This bill is intended to eliminate any loopholes, no longer allowing researchers to obtain animals from “free to good home” posts on Craigslist or by taking strays from the street. This would also eliminate some instances of animal theft, as thieves would lose the ability to sell stolen animals to research facilities. Pounds and shelters would not be required to donate or sell animals to animal research facilities and could refuse if asked.
This bill would help ensure that animals for research purposes are not being taken from loving homes and eliminate some of the unethical methods animal research facilities have for procuring test subjects. Until we outlaw animal testing entirely, we need to be sure that testing is not being done to animals that have been taken from loving homes. Please ask Chairman of the House of Representatives Committee on Agriculture Frank D. Lucas to support this bill to help eliminate the possibility of pets being stolen and sold to research facilities.
Dear Chairman Lucas,
A new bill, H. R. 2256, seeks to amend the Animal Welfare Act to ensure that animals used in research facilities are procured ethically. As the Animal Welfare Act stands now, there is too much wiggle room for facilities that may want to avoid high prices from purchasing from licensed dealers. This amendment would require that test animals not be purchased from pet stores unless the dealer bred and raised the animal, that pounds or shelters only sell or donate animals that were brought to the shelter by legal owners, and that donations come from legal owners, eliminating the possibility that pets might be stolen and sold to research facilities.
Your support on this bill would be invaluable. The Animal Welfare Act has made great strides for protecting the lives of animals, but we can do more to ensure that pets are not being taken from loving homes. Please show your support by signing H. R. 2256 and encouraging other members of the Committee on Agriculture to do the same.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: Stevenfruitsmaak via Wikimedia Commons