Primate monkeys held at a publicly funded laboratory in Madison, US, were subject to constant suffering and cruelty, according to an investigation by PETA. Little monkeys were forcibly separated from their mothers, animals injured themselves.
Audiovisual material, including a video published on YouTube, collected during a six-month undercover investigation by an activist from the PETA (People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals) organization shows primates treated with cruelty and contempt, we read on the association's website.
The monkeys were kept for many years in conditions that prevented them from meeting their most basic needs, in tight wire cages housed in windowless enclosures, the laboratory reported in its September investigation.
These highly intelligent, social animals were exposed to constant, extreme stress from living conditions, including loneliness and lack of activity, the document says. As a result, the animals self-mutilated and attacked others, leading to deep wounds, sometimes requiring amputation, reports PETA.
The misfortune of these animals begins at the moment of their birth - emphasizes the article focusing mainly on the example of macaques kept in the facility. Monkeys give birth to cubs in bare wire cages where they spend their entire lives, often without a blanket, the report said. Baby monkeys are then forcibly separated from their mothers in the first year of their lives, the organization notes, describing the animals' rich social life and stressing the importance of the bond between a mother and her children.
The animals are kept for a variety of tests, including they are starved, infected with various viruses, their semen is used to obtain which the genitals of monkeys are electrocuted - the PETA report continues.
"The National Primate Research Center (WNPRC) in Wisconsin uses taxpayers' money to torture animals," said Dr. Alka Chandra, who is in charge of the organization's investigations of laboratory animal research cases. She added that the centre has been violated many times and that it must be closed.
The WNPRC is one of the largest primate research laboratories in the world and one of seven federally funded primate research units in the US. The centre operates in partnership with the University of Wisconsin in Madison. In 2019, he received over $ 300 million for his activities from the American National Institute of Health (NIH) - introduces the PETA institution.
On its website, WNPRC informs that about 1.6 thousand people are kept in the laboratory. animals and its main focus is "to conduct humane research involving non-human primates to advance knowledge of primates and to address human and animal health problems".
PETA said federal authorities, including the US Department of Agriculture, had previously fined the laboratory several times for non-compliance with animal welfare laws. The last one was issued in April 2020 for depriving animals of basic care. "The PETA investigation shows that nothing has changed in this regard," the organization's report concludes. The association is calling for the release of all animals held at the facility and is organizing supportive voices to close the laboratory.
In a statement released in response to the PETA report, the University of Wisconsin-Madison said the facility cares about animals and will be involved in investigating the allegations against the laboratory. The communication also suggests that the individual cases presented by an animal rights organization are exceptions that do not represent the treatment of animals at the facility. He also emphasizes that animal research has contributed to a better understanding and control of Alzheimer's disease, cancer, AIDS and other diseases (PAP)