Are Experiments on Animals Necessary?

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Offline Titanscape

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Are Experiments on Animals Necessary?
« on: 05/10/2011 05:25:25 »
www.peta.org asks for help to stop animal based research. Is such research necessary? What has it accomplished before? How can it be replaced?
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Offline Bored chemist

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« Reply #1 on: 05/10/2011 06:57:21 »
It's very expensive and generally unpopular.
Do you think people would keep doing it if it were not necessary?
There are already moves to replace it, but they really are not up to the job yet.
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Offline CliffordK

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« Reply #2 on: 05/10/2011 07:39:51 »
There are very strict review guidelines for animal experiments, and most experiments are done with minimum levels of discomfort for the animals.

Without anthropomorphizing animals too much, for some animals, life in a cage with regular meals, care, and cleaning may be better than for those living in the wild with irregular food sources, predators, weather, and etc.

The next time a new medication comes onto the market, you are welcome to volunteer to be the first to test it out.  Perhaps you and a buddy could team up to help determine the LD50 of the med.

There may be some things that don't require animal testing.  However, many of the tests are absolutely necessary.  New medications can not be introduced to he market without thorough testing of both efficacy and safety.  Not all of it can be done in a petri dish. 

And, while old meds may be good for some things, there is demand for new medications.  For example, unless a new class of antibiotics is developed soon, antibiotic resistance may grow into a far more serious problem.  New and better treatments for illnesses are being developed all the time.

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Offline Don_1

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« Reply #3 on: 05/10/2011 10:29:54 »
While I agree that animal testing is a foul deed, there just doesn't seem to be a reliable alternative yet. Of course drugs should be tested in other ways as far as is practical and will give valuable results, but the final analysis seems to be only reliable with animal testing.

Testing of drugs is an unfortunate necessity, but testing of cosmetics, personal hygene products, household cleaners etc is totally unnecessary. We have more than enough of these products as it is.

One thing which concerns me, is that PETA and other bodies seek to outlaw animal testing in the UK, USA, Germany, France etc. I would rather have the testing done in these countries, where there are strict regulations to protect animals from unnecessary pain and suffering, than to have the testing carried out somewhere where such regulations are lax or nonexistent. And please do remember, that some of this animal testing is done for the benefit of the animals concerned; they too need drugs from time to time.
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Offline CliffordK

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« Reply #4 on: 05/10/2011 17:55:41 »
I would rather have the testing done in these countries, where there are strict regulations to protect animals from unnecessary pain and suffering, than to have the testing carried out somewhere where such regulations are lax or nonexistent.

I would also rather that drugs targeted for use in the USA would be developed in the USA or Europe rather than developing them in Nigeria where one can never be certain what the truth is.

There is also the risk of exporting human trials overseas.

In some cases it may be appropriate, for example testing AIDS vaccines in areas with the highest endemic infection rates, but there is always a risk of other motives for running the tests overseas.

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Offline chris

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« Reply #5 on: 05/10/2011 23:38:48 »
The reality is that, whilst a petri dish is a very good substitute for a mouse in many ways, it hasn't got an immune system. Were it not for experimental animals, we would not be able to perform organ transplants, we would not have made the advances in stem cell therapy that now save lives on a daily basis and, as alluded to above, many of the drugs that are in mainstream use would have had a much riskier route to market.

Animal experimentation is one of the most heavily regulated activities in the UK. The paperwork that a researcher must complete in order to obtain a personal and project license to permit them to carry out their desired investigations is rainforest-demolishingly large.

Furthermore, to keep a cohort of mice in an animal unit for scientific purposes now costs more than the average person's house.

And with grants and and scientists' time at an all-time premium, no one can afford to pursue this line of work without good reason.

"Good," you might say, since this will reduce the rates of animal experiments being conducted.

Sadly not. Instead what is happening is that the preclusive costs are leading to scientists being forced to establish testing collaborations with other countries - chiefly china - where in comparison there are virtually no regulations or financial deterrents to the use of animals; hence laboratory animal welfare in these settings is unlikely to be as high as it would be were the work being conducted in Britain.

So, by introducing over-burdensome and over-priced regulations, we've shot ourselves in the foot twice over: 1) because we're haemorrhaging IP and money to China, and 2) because the animals are actually coming off worse in the long run.
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Offline ablestmage

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« Reply #6 on: 06/10/2011 05:10:26 »
I find it curious that pet owners would object to animal testing, when animal testing is how the very pet food that owner purchases is determined to be beneficial. How else would they be able to tell if pet food were beneficial to animals, had they not tested the food on animals?  How is it not hypocritical, to be against animal testing, yet purchase food unashamedly that was tested on animals?

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Offline Bored chemist

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« Reply #7 on: 06/10/2011 07:12:02 »
Medicines are tested on humans; do you refuse to use them?
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Offline CliffordK

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« Reply #8 on: 06/10/2011 08:43:53 »
Pet foods are vastly different than animal testing. 
They are mostly derived from natural products and byproducts, and may just fall under GRAS.  Protein levels, however, may be manipulated based on information gleaned from other studies.

Do they actually test the pet foods to see if pets like them?  Or is it mainly marketing to appease pet owners?

The Chinese, of course, failed to test a synthetic protein supplement melamine that made its way into US pet foods with disastrous results in 2007.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Protein_adulteration_in_the_People%27s_Republic_of_China
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2007_pet_food_recalls

Actually, apparently melamine had been studied as early as 1953 (animal studies), and the toxicity had been known long before the Chinese added it as a pet food supplement in 2007.
« Last Edit: 06/10/2011 08:45:50 by CliffordK »

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Offline Bored chemist

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« Reply #9 on: 06/10/2011 20:53:06 »
A friend of a friend of mine used to work for a pet food manufacturer as a taster.

The animals on which pet foods are tested get paid.
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Offline chris

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« Reply #10 on: 07/10/2011 08:02:16 »
...
A friend of a friend of mine used to work for a pet food manufacturer as a taster.
The animals on which pet foods are tested get paid.

...in Pedigree Chum, presumably?
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Offline damocles

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« Reply #11 on: 07/10/2011 15:03:05 »
from CliffordK

Quote
The Chinese, of course, failed to test a synthetic protein supplement melamine that made its way into US pet foods with disastrous results in 2007.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Protein_adulteration_in_the_People%27s_Republic_of_China
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2007_pet_food_recalls

Actually, apparently melamine had been studied as early as 1953 (animal studies), and the toxicity had been known long before the Chinese added it as a pet food supplement in 2007.

Melamine is not actually a "synthetic protein supplement". It is a very simple chemical whose sole purpose as a pet food additive is to mimic protein in analytical chemistry tests so that the protein content of a product appears to be higher than it really is.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Melamine

It is indeed quite toxic; its actual biochemistry is more closely related to that of cyanide than to protein.
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Offline imatfaal

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« Reply #12 on: 07/10/2011 16:20:26 »
The Chinese, of course, failed to test a synthetic protein supplement melamine that made its way into US pet foods with disastrous results in 2007.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Protein_adulteration_in_the_People%27s_Republic_of_China
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2007_pet_food_recalls
 

With respect; the damage to US pets is unimportant in my opinion - the real scandal is that 6 children died and 50,000 were hospitalised because melamine was used to artificially boost the protein test results of baby milk. 

I am implacable opposed to the death penalty so I will not condone the chinese authorities actions in response - but the culprits, who did this action to make extra money in full knowledge of the potential dangers were executed.

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Offline Geezer

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« Reply #13 on: 08/10/2011 01:54:16 »
Ahem! Just to lighten things up a bit, this reminds me of a very old story:

The key players in a pet food company were all assembled in the board room to review the latest dog food product and all the promotional material. After an interminable series of presentations from marketing, operations, sales, etc. etc., the wise old CEO stopped the meeting and asked,

"But will dogs eat it?"
There ain'ta no sanity clause, and there ain'ta no centrifugal force æther.

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Offline CliffordK

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« Reply #14 on: 08/10/2011 04:57:19 »
"But will dogs eat it?"

I suppose that is important...  a bit.
The question of whether the dogs actually like it is irrelevant, as long as the dog owners like to buy it.

Heck, many dogs I've seen would be perfectly happy eating manure.

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Offline MikeS

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« Reply #15 on: 08/10/2011 07:16:48 »
My dogs all time favourite is donkey poo.

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Offline Bored chemist

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« Reply #16 on: 08/10/2011 14:55:29 »
...
A friend of a friend of mine used to work for a pet food manufacturer as a taster.
The animals on which pet foods are tested get paid.

...in Pedigree Chum, presumably?

No, she was paid in pounds sterling.
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Offline chris

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« Reply #17 on: 08/10/2011 21:54:42 »
So do dogs have to pay tax on their "earnings"? I'm wondering if I could get my pets "working" for me, testing an (ahem) new variety of dog food I'm inventing; they'll need their expenses covering too, of course...!
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Offline Geezer

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« Reply #18 on: 09/10/2011 00:13:04 »
My dogs all time favourite is donkey poo.

Eating it is bad enough, but I really take exception when they decide to roll around in the stuff (we just had to give Shona a bath because she decided Eau de Deer Poop was the fragrance of the month.)
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Offline Bored chemist

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« Reply #19 on: 09/10/2011 10:52:42 »
So do dogs have to pay tax on their "earnings"? I'm wondering if I could get my pets "working" for me, testing an (ahem) new variety of dog food I'm inventing; they'll need their expenses covering too, of course...!

Why the talk about dogs? The tester in this case is human.
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Offline Phil1907

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« Reply #20 on: 14/10/2011 14:48:27 »
Animal feeding studies are indeed part of the pet food R&D process and they are for the human food industry and testing in are both equaly benign.  Drug, cosmetic, etc indsutries have adopted some in vitro testing and use animals only when other valid models are not available to address the risk.  Even then and as was said before, animal testing is carefully controlled in companies both externally by regulation and internally by systems and animal use protocols.

That said, peta is a dogmatic organization interested 1st in funding that is better raised by its adopting an absolute objective rather than understanding the reasons folks continue to use such testing.  Let's not forget that peta is against even pet ownership.

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Offline JohnMethyu

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« Reply #21 on: 20/10/2011 10:20:44 »
Most of scientist are doing experiment with animals for testing drugs.first they tests drugs on animals then if it is beneficial for animals then they supply that drugs for human.Sometime drugs harmful and dangerous for animals.Better to do less experiment with animals.


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« Last Edit: 20/10/2011 10:58:13 by imatfaal »

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Offline CliffordK

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« Reply #22 on: 20/10/2011 19:22:44 »
Most of scientist are doing experiment with animals for testing drugs.first they tests drugs on animals then if it is beneficial for animals then they supply that drugs for human.
It is not that the drugs are beneficial for the animals.  Or, that the intended use in animals is very widespread.  The target for the drug development is usually humans.  The drugs are just tested in animals to verify efficacy and safety.

How many animals need anti-hypertensive medications?  Anti-Cholesterol medications?

There are some animals that are bred specifically for animal testing.  For example, Nude Rats have minimal rejection of human tissue.  So, they might receive a graft of human tissue, and then receive medications to treat an induced disease condition.


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Offline Phil1907

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« Reply #23 on: 22/10/2011 19:05:05 »
Animals are used in drug testing in its preclinical phase.  Verification of safety and efficacy has to come from clincal studies with humans.

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Offline Airthumbs

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« Reply #24 on: 22/10/2011 21:44:14 »
Without anthropomorphizing animals too much, for some animals, life in a cage with regular meals, care, and cleaning may be better than for those living in the wild with irregular food sources, predators, weather, and etc.

CliffordK!!  How can you say such things!  I am almost speechless, almost..........

For those of you with the same mindset, can you please, when you have the time visit this webpage and have a quick look.

Here is a quick short list of some things that caged animals suffer from.........

Anxiety
Cannibalism
Hair loss
Stress
Death

I suspect that there will be a come back from this along the lines of well certain animals are bred for testing, well in response that's not very nice either is it!!

Yes we all know that we owe a lot to animals, you might even go as far to say they have affected our gene pool?   [;D]




Any intelligent fool can make things bigger and more complex... It takes a touch of genius - and a lot of courage to move in the opposite direction. (Einstein)

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Offline Bored chemist

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« Reply #25 on: 23/10/2011 15:34:23 »
Whereas wild animals suffer from
Anxiety
predation
Hair loss
Stress
Death
and lots of other things (though, once you put death on the list, the other's might be thought of as rather minor).
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Offline CliffordK

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« Reply #26 on: 23/10/2011 17:07:43 »
It would all depend on the species, and the laboratory.  And, perhaps the country where the experiments are being conducted (as noted above the risk of exporting our science).

The lab rats I've seen were well cared for.  No mange, hairloss, & etc.  They were not vicious against their caretakers, and didn't seem to show anxiety around their human caretakers (unlike their wild brethren).  Cages were kept clean.

I didn't see any dogs, and don't know how much space they would be given.

The monkeys I saw also seemed to be well treated, and had a significant amount of space, perhaps more than a zoo would give them.

As far as death,
I have yet to see an animal species that doesn't eventually die.
I had a steak for dinner last night.  I don't think the cow died from old age.


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Offline Phil1907

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« Reply #27 on: 23/10/2011 21:11:53 »
Perhaps airthimbs and bored chemist might offer a reference for the reported sufferings of caged animals - and in context of what applications tested animals express these.

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Offline Airthumbs

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« Reply #28 on: 23/10/2011 21:49:12 »
Bored chemist and Cliffordk both raise valid points....  Yes animals die, but there is a big difference between natural death by whatever means and induced death from unnatural environmental conditions.  Yes I am sure the lab rats where docile and appeared quite happy.  The reason they are like this as I said before is that they are bred that way over many generations through selective breeding.  By this method the so called unwanted traits have disappeared.

The problem with these things is that ultimately they are managed by humans.  Humans can be quite nasty buggers and mistreatment in some labs and zoos is quite bad.  I know that these places are supposed to be highly regulated but lets face it so are the banks and our governments but look at what can happen there.  

Given the choice would you prefer to live in a cage your whole life controlled by genocidal scientists not knowing if your going to die or suffer as a result of testing. Or would you rather be free to at least live your life.  I don't think there are many people who prefer prison to freedom as would be the comparison here with regard to food, cleaning and a warm bed and so on....

Animals clearly demonstrate a higher level of social and empathic intelligence then most people understand or give them credit for.  I know several people who have worked at slaughter houses and they told  me they absolutely loved killing the animals, in fact they even went as far as to say they thought it was funny when they could abuse them before the were killed.  This is not uncommon and if you really think about it what kind of person is going to actually enjoy working at these places?  Not many people could stomach the sound of a screaming pig and lets face it most of us would want to try and help this animal in distress.

So the steak you ate cliffordK was most likely killed by some sick individual who gets a thrill from killing things. I hope that made it taste better for you although as a meat eater myself I face the some moral issues. As Richard Feynman sais unless you stop and think about things that seem so obvious you don't notice them.

As regard to the original question, how long have humans been around for and how long have we been testing medicine on animals?  Great leaps in medicine have been made thanks to animals, we destroy their environment, we poison them through pollution, hunt them for pleasure and use them to cure our modern illnesses.  As more and more animal species become extinct due to our unregulated extortion of the planet I wonder at what point someone will stand up and say enough is enough, we have to start to respect each other and the planet we live on.  We really have to find other ways and stop making declarations all the time that we need to use animals for experimentation.  We don't need to use them at all, where do you draw the line, a million monkeys to save a life?  ten million to make a new vaccine?  
Before you place such importance on the testing on animals I would be all ears if you could say to me that the human population has clean drinking water.  Instead of trying to cure John Doe of his rare genetic disorder why don't we concentrate on the most basic things first?  You really don't need a billion lab rats to try and give the world clean drinking water!!

As has been stated, all things die.  Is this a justification to kill things because they are going to die one day anyway.

That's my opinion anyway  [::)]
Any intelligent fool can make things bigger and more complex... It takes a touch of genius - and a lot of courage to move in the opposite direction. (Einstein)

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Offline Airthumbs

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« Reply #29 on: 23/10/2011 21:58:58 »
Perhaps airthimbs and bored chemist might offer a reference for the reported sufferings of caged animals - and in context of what applications tested animals express these.

No offence intended but I suggest you do a little research on the internet and maybe start with NGO's such as green peace, http://www.greenpeace.org.uk/toxics/animal-testing-position-statement  WWF http://www.wwf.org.uk/filelibrary/pdf/aniamltesting03.pdf PETA http://www.peta.org/issues/animals-used-for-experimentation/default.aspx

I am sorry I cannot for the life of me work out how to incorporate a link into text and even though Geezer tried to explain it to me I still can't seem to work it out!!  [:I]
Any intelligent fool can make things bigger and more complex... It takes a touch of genius - and a lot of courage to move in the opposite direction. (Einstein)

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Offline Bored chemist

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« Reply #30 on: 23/10/2011 22:30:40 »
"I don't think there are many people who prefer prison to freedom as would be the comparison here with regard to food, cleaning and a warm bed and so on...."
Two points. There is some evidence of people with no other means of support committing crimes just before Christmas so they get arrested and spend a night in a warm clean cell, rather than on the streets. It shows that we have truly screwed up social care, but it's true.
Secondly
we are all in a prison. It's called the gravitational potential well of the earth.
The big difference is not the size of the cell, but whether or not we consider it to be a prison.
We can make that distinction: a rat can't so the comparison is meaningless.
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Offline Airthumbs

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« Reply #31 on: 23/10/2011 22:48:35 »
Bored chemist, the fact a rat cannot understand cosmological physics is, I feel, a rather weak argument for the justification of animal experimentation.  Out of interest do you think that a Rat can tell the difference between freedom and a cage?  Certain behaviors in animals, as I am sure you are aware are innate, could freedom be one of these?
Any intelligent fool can make things bigger and more complex... It takes a touch of genius - and a lot of courage to move in the opposite direction. (Einstein)

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Offline yor_on

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« Reply #32 on: 24/10/2011 07:17:12 »
It is indeed a question of ethics. Some hundred years ago it was considered good fun to throw a cat into the fire and watch it burn. Today I hope we would find such people sociopaths.

Hopefully we will find better ways of testing as time moves on. But as long as we can't say what the effects are of a new drug, and need a live animal to see that fuller spectrum of effects I'm afraid we will continue.

But it's a debt we carry, that others pay.
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Offline Phil1907

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« Reply #33 on: 24/10/2011 19:03:07 »
Mind sharing the data of folks committing criems to stay in prison on Christmas?  Think I saw this on Mayberry.  Interesting that some see everything in such a negative light - "gravitatioal potential well of earth".  Great nonsense but must be a sad life.

Cats into the fire to watch them burn? Debts we carry that others must pay?  More evidence of unthinkng bias than valid analogies.  Perhaps the author of this silliness is familiar with cats who fail to jump out of fires that are a valuable fuel source - anyone know how many BTU are in the avg cat?.  But it's not obvious how animal testing constitutes a "debt", who the creditor might be, what "others" must pay and in what currency. 
Entertining posturing but abolute nonsense.

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Offline Airthumbs

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« Reply #34 on: 24/10/2011 19:54:19 »
Don't forget that tests on animals are not just for medicine!

[attachment=15455]
My photo from the Banksy exhibition in Bristol  [;D]
« Last Edit: 24/10/2011 20:11:23 by Airthumbs »
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Offline Bored chemist

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« Reply #35 on: 24/10/2011 21:37:58 »
Bored chemist, the fact a rat cannot understand cosmological physics is, I feel, a rather weak argument for the justification of animal experimentation.  Out of interest do you think that a Rat can tell the difference between freedom and a cage?  Certain behaviors in animals, as I am sure you are aware are innate, could freedom be one of these?

I'm not saying that a rat's lack of cosmology is the point. I'm saying that we are all in a cage. The point is that we usually ignore this fact and get on with our lives.
The rat, in the same way, lives it's life in a cage without being aware that it's a rat, never mind that it's a rat in a cage. As for "Certain behaviors in animals, as I am sure you are aware are innate, could freedom be one of these?"
No, I don't think it can be. Freedom is a very abstract notion- so much so that people aren't even certain when they have it. I really don't believe rats have the intellect to grasp it.
There's a difference between a rat trying to escape a cat- that's a clear threat and a rat trying to get out of a cage. A rat might instinctively search about or hunt for food. It might even  be stressed by not having the option of doing these things, but that's a poor shadow of our sense of freedom.

And Phil, are you saying that we are not in a gravitational potential well that we have no sensible chance of escaping? Or are you saying it's nonsense because I messed up the typing. If it's the latter you need to be more careful than to talk of "Entertining posturing but abolute nonsense" if the former then perhaps you should find the cost of sending something out of the well (never mind keeping someone alive, fed watered etc).
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Offline Airthumbs

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« Reply #36 on: 24/10/2011 22:15:38 »
Bored Chemist, how do you know that Rats don't have an understanding of the cosmos? A Rat knows the difference between day and night  [;D]

I'm sure you heard about that new machine that can create images from thoughts, has anyone tried it on Rats?  Could be quite interesting......   

Prisons are things that you cannot normally escape from, give me a Saturn 5 rocket and I will show you how to escape our gravity well of a prison  [:P]

And yes freedom is something that not many people truly have, but most animals are free and should stay that way.  Just because our freedom is slowly being eroded away does not give us the right to use animals against their will for experimentation.  Of course if you can show me a way of getting a Rats permission to cut it's head open in the name of science I would be most impressed and surprised.

At the end of the day, or start of it, this is all about ethics and personal opinion, what we really need is an alternative, hopefully at some point soon computers will be powerful enough to allow us to forgo the need to make tests on animals.

It was not just cats people used throw into fires, not so long ago in Germany there were stories of the same kind of thing being done to babies!  We are so cruel it makes me sick!  Am I human? Embarrassingly yes!   [V] 


Any intelligent fool can make things bigger and more complex... It takes a touch of genius - and a lot of courage to move in the opposite direction. (Einstein)

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Offline Bored chemist

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« Reply #37 on: 25/10/2011 20:57:47 »
"Prisons are things that you cannot normally escape from, give me a Saturn 5 rocket and I will show you how to escape our gravity well of a prison"
A fairly common design of prison was an island surrounded by sharks.
If you escape from the earth's gravity well in a rocket, the effect is like "escaping" from the island by swimming.

Oh, BTW, it was you  who questioned the rats' grasp of the cosmos. I just took your word for it and pointed out that it didn't matter one way or the other. I suspect that plenty of lab rats don't see enough daylight to know if it's day or night.
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Offline CliffordK

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« Reply #38 on: 25/10/2011 21:50:02 »
A fairly common design of prison was an island surrounded by sharks.

They did that in Cuba.
And...  the Cubans have showed wonderful ingenuity to get around it.

It was not just cats people used throw into fires, not so long ago in Germany there were stories of the same kind of thing being done to babies! 

The Germans also did experiments on POWs & Jewish Prisoners.  Of course, a similar experiment was done in Alabama.
There are many people who refuse to utilize any medical advanced made by the German's experiments on Humans, although perhaps it is difficult to separate out some of that knowledge from general knowledge, for example the Wikipedia article discusses the German experiments with respect to hypothermia.

If modern medicine is such an ethical problem, you are welcome to return to Medieval medical practices.

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Offline Airthumbs

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« Reply #39 on: 25/10/2011 23:18:37 »
If modern medicine is such an ethical problem, you are welcome to return to Medieval medical practices.

I think medicine has always been an ethical problem and a religious one also.  Would you not be a lot happier to call medicine "modern" if you did not have to kill animals to do it?

Some Medieval practices are still used today, maggots, leaches to name some!

In a hundred years if the human race is still kicking and we continue to advance through technology I sincerely hope that a Dr, someone who protects life, will find the idea of animal experimentation repulsive and an unfortunate alternative to investment in alternative technologies that was way too slow in implementation.  [:P]

Is it possible to have a rabid sharks?  [xx(]
« Last Edit: 25/10/2011 23:27:59 by Airthumbs »
Any intelligent fool can make things bigger and more complex... It takes a touch of genius - and a lot of courage to move in the opposite direction. (Einstein)

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Offline CliffordK

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« Reply #40 on: 25/10/2011 23:47:44 »
At this point, there is a lot of testing done with cultured tissues, in part because one can use human cultured tissues rather than animal tissues.

There is also somewhat of a hierarchy of animals, with fruit flies and slugs near the bottom.
Rats and mice a small, but significant step upwards.
Very few experiments are run on cats and dogs.
And fewer still are run on primates, although primates may be the last step for drug testing before human studies.

I don't think animal studies are going away any time soon as there are some things that just can't be done with cultures.  Aren't some of the religious fanatics trying to limit the access to tissue cultures too?

A few years ago, PETA raided some university laboratories, and set their research animals "free" to starve to death, or be prey for other truly wild animals.  Is that a benefit?
« Last Edit: 25/10/2011 23:49:28 by CliffordK »

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Offline Airthumbs

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« Reply #41 on: 26/10/2011 00:08:48 »
A few years ago, PETA raided some university laboratories, and set their research animals "free" to starve to death, or be prey for other truly wild animals.  Is that a benefit?

I completely agree there was no benefit at all in that case other then a temporary boost to the local ecosystem.  What they should have done was take the animals and re habituated them slowly into the wild and then when the day comes that animal will want to be free I tell you that, the door will open and off it goes to do what it evolved to do over billions of years.  [^] 
Any intelligent fool can make things bigger and more complex... It takes a touch of genius - and a lot of courage to move in the opposite direction. (Einstein)

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Offline CliffordK

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« Reply #42 on: 26/10/2011 00:26:29 »
we ... hunt them for pleasure

Have you ever gone fishing?

Or... is it best to just let the big factory trawlers do the work of hunting and killing wild fish?

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Offline damocles

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« Reply #43 on: 26/10/2011 00:31:48 »
A few years ago, PETA raided some university laboratories, and set their research animals "free" to starve to death, or be prey for other truly wild animals.  Is that a benefit?

I completely agree there was no benefit at all in that case other then a temporary boost to the local ecosystem.  What they should have done was take the animals and re habituated them slowly into the wild and then when the day comes that animal will want to be free I tell you that, the door will open and off it goes to do what it evolved to do over billions of years.  [^] 

Not so sure about that Airthumbs. The sparrows around here choose to come into shops where food scraps are occasionally found, and forage there, sheltered from the weather, even though they are "locked in" nearly all of the time, and have little chance of escape. When caught and humanely "released to the wild", they usually quickly return. The notion of "imprisoned" is very much in the mind, whether it be a sophisticated human mind, or a bird brain!
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Offline Airthumbs

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« Reply #44 on: 26/10/2011 01:24:26 »
Sparrows are foragers by nature, it's what they have evolved to do and the most effective way to do it the better.  Give them free food for nothing and a place to keep warm of course they are going to take advantage of that. It is essential to their survival that they learn where the best places in their territory are for food, but it won't be happy if you put it in a cage and inflict pain on it!

Once upon a time I was digging a pond with a tractor for some wild ducks that lived nearby on a lake that roosted on a smaller pond nearby.  I had finished the digging with a team and was working at the edge of the unfilled structure when a group of wild ducks landed nearby.  They seemed quite inquisitive about what I was doing and soon discovered the fresh soil I was turning over had plenty of treats inside in the form of worms.  They would not come within 10 meters of me at the edge and kept this invisible barrier bewteen us and seemed very wary of me, I think they thought they were stealing food that I had worked so hard to get and were expecting me to defend my grub so to speak.

Anyway I decided I would try something, I picked up a worm and threw it at them, at first they were surprised but then by the third worm they totally ignored this 10mt barrier to the point that several times I had to stop my digging mid strike to avoid cutting the head off from an eager wild duck who was sticking his head into freshly dug soil!  Had I been very, very, very hungry; and you know some people do eat Duck as some do Sparrow  [:P]

 
Any intelligent fool can make things bigger and more complex... It takes a touch of genius - and a lot of courage to move in the opposite direction. (Einstein)

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Offline Don_1

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« Reply #45 on: 26/10/2011 11:00:20 »
There is a difference between animals which are held regardless of their will and those which choose to live in a man made environment. As Airthumbs wrote, it is not surprising that wild animals will take full advantage of whatever they can.

The release of lab animals into the wild is totally irresponsible. Not only does it put those animals at risk, but it can also adversely effect the wild ecology. In the UK, our Stoats and Weasels cannot compete with Mink, released into the wild by animal activists, and are in decline. Those Mink also pose a threat to ducks voles and other prey animals.

Even the release of native species, bred for the lab or the pet trade, can have dire consequences. Captive bred animals may have no resistance to pathogens their wild cousins carry. Similarly, captive bred animals may safely carry pathogens to which the wild population may have no resistance.

Animal testing IS NOT desirable, but, until a reliable alternative can be found, remains essential.
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Offline Airthumbs

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« Reply #46 on: 26/10/2011 11:38:21 »
we ... hunt them for pleasure

Have you ever gone fishing?

Yes I have gone fishing and the last time I did so is when two things happened on the same day..... firstly a fish took the bait and I pulled way to hard on the line!  The line went slack and as the fish had swallowed the hook all that came flying out of the lake attached to the line was it's guts!  On the same day I caught a fish and I used to hate taking the hook from it's mouth because the fish was obviously not happy about it.  The fish literally squeaked when I tried to pull the hook out. I dropped it in astonishment and then made someone else take the hook out.  That was the last time I went fishing and since then I have to agree with Spike Millagan, "Fishing is madness"!

It's a lot easier to eat things you don't have to catch or kill yourself and if all you have to do is go hunting in the supermarket you will have no idea of how an animal fights for its life when your trying to take it away.
Any intelligent fool can make things bigger and more complex... It takes a touch of genius - and a lot of courage to move in the opposite direction. (Einstein)

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Offline Bored chemist

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« Reply #47 on: 26/10/2011 19:04:31 »
""Fishing is madness"!"
It's good to see that we agree about something.
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Offline Titanscape

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« Reply #48 on: 30/10/2011 13:08:22 »
Here is a quote from Peta:
"It's hard to imagine the violence inflicted upon animals trapped in product-testing laboratories. They have harmful substances forced down their throats and chemicals sprayed into their eyes and rubbed onto their shaved, raw skin—without being given anything to numb the pain.

What makes this intense cruelty even worse is how utterly senseless these tests are. There are non-animal testing methods that are better at ensuring the safety of both humans and animals, yet some corporations continue to abuse and kill frightened animals."

"Not one of the experiments that Lipton conducted was legally required for beveragemakers. But that fact has done little to deter experimenters contracted by multinational corporation Nestlé, maker of the Nestea brand of iced tea, from force-feeding mice tea ingredients before killing them. In one particularly disturbing experiment conducted for the company, mice were bred to suffer from brain damage and rapid aging, locked in dark chambers, and given painful shocks to their sensitive feet before being killed."

There should be two sides, I agree the suffering is bad, but is it unnecessary? Peta claims non animal testing is better scientifically.
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Offline yor_on

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« Reply #49 on: 30/10/2011 13:29:57 »

Cats into the fire to watch them burn? Debts we carry that others must pay?  More evidence of unthinkng bias than valid analogies.  Perhaps the author of this silliness is familiar with cats who fail to jump out of fires that are a valuable fuel source - anyone know how many BTU are in the avg cat?.  But it's not obvious how animal testing constitutes a "debt", who the creditor might be, what "others" must pay and in what currency. 
Entertining posturing but abolute nonsense.

You know Phil, you might be right in that I'm 'biased'. Life is very much eating, and living, of each other. But it's also a question of the ethics, and if it's necessary, or if it is just a lazy way of handling things, most probably a economic too for those involved in it. As for cats getting thrown into a fire it really happened, and is known historically. Absolute nonsense? Nah.
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