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Animal experiments rise to over 4 million despite Coalition pledge to reduce them

United Kingdom


The number of animal experiments carried out in the UK topped four million last year with a sharp increase in the number of monkeys used in laboratories.

Home Office statistics show that 4.11million experiments were carried out in university, charity and commercial labs in 2012 – an 8 per cent jump on the previous year.

The total, the highest since 1982, has emerged three years after the Coalition pledged in its programme for government to ‘work to reduce the use of animals in scientific research', meaning the Government has failed for a third year on its post-election pledge to work to reduce the number of animal experiments.

Overall 74 per cent – was carried out on mice.  Fish accounted for 12 per cent of the total, rats made up 7 per cent and birds, 4 per cent. 

Dogs were used almost 5,000 times and cats on 247 occasions. Experiments on sheep, goats and guinea pigs rose, while on fish, rabbits and pigs fell.

As a result, millions of animals continue to suffer and die in laboratories. No serious effort is being made by the Government to reverse the rise in animal experiments.

To be able to progress we need to see meaningful and lasting changes. Animals should be out of laboratories, and cutting-edge replacements in.




Photo © Alamy

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