LETTER: College should heal, not harm

Many of your readers will be shocked by the Royal Veterinary College’s (RVC) acknowledgement that its researchers are subjecting dogs to painful laboratory experiments that aim to alleviate human, rather than animal, suffering.

The College has bred its own colony of beagle-cross dogs with genetic flaws, leading them to suffer a canine version of Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy (DMD).

Symptoms include muscle wasting and breathing problems. To limit their distress, the animals are put down at around 18 months of age.

A fresh experimental phase begins this year, involving the introduction of laboratory-manufactured, genetic material – a process that could lead to unpredictable, physiological problems.

The extent of the animal research being conducted at the RVC is truly shocking.

In 2012, it used more than 9,000 animals for veterinary or human studies. They included mice, pigs, horses and even emus.

A veterinary college should be healing, not harming, animals – especially when evidence is mounting to show that information obtained from animal ‘models’ cannot be reliably applied to human medicine.

Jessamy Korotoga

Animal Aid, Tonbridge

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