The federal government is 'exposing dogs to anthrax, forcing them to suffer heart attacks, and drilling into their skulls'

Congress is investigating experiments that may have harmed dogs.
(Image credit: FREDERIC J. BROWN/AFP/Getty Images)

Five federal agencies held 1,183 dogs in captivity in 2015, and 294 of them were used by the government in experiments that caused the animals "significant pain and distress," says a new report from the White Coat Waste Project, a nonpartisan organization dedicated to stopping tax-funded vivisection.

The testing was mostly conducted on beagles, the report notes, "because of their small size and docile temperament, the same qualities that make them beloved pets." Experiments involved "exposing dogs to anthrax, forcing them to suffer heart attacks, and drilling into their skulls."

The report has caught the notice of 13 members of the House of Representatives, who are now seeking a full audit of federal animal experimentation. "Unfortunately we have discovered it is impossible to determine what federal animal research programs currently entail, what they cost, and if they meet federal standards because of the limited and decentralized information available publicly," said the representatives in a letter to the Government Accountability Office. One firm dollar figure the White Coat Waste report was able to cite is that taxpayers spent nearly $6 million in the past five years on experiments that gave dogs heart attacks.

Subscribe to The Week

Escape your echo chamber. Get the facts behind the news, plus analysis from multiple perspectives.

SUBSCRIBE & SAVE
https://cdn.mos.cms.futurecdn.net/flexiimages/jacafc5zvs1692883516.jpg

Sign up for The Week's Free Newsletters

From our morning news briefing to a weekly Good News Newsletter, get the best of The Week delivered directly to your inbox.

From our morning news briefing to a weekly Good News Newsletter, get the best of The Week delivered directly to your inbox.

Sign up

The five agencies overseeing the vivisections are the Centers for Disease Control, the Department of Defense, the Food and Drug Administration, the National Institutes of Health, and the Department of Veterans Affairs. An additional 60,000 dogs are held for experimental use in universities and other laboratories that receive federal funding.

Continue reading for free

We hope you're enjoying The Week's refreshingly open-minded journalism.

Subscribed to The Week? Register your account with the same email as your subscription.