A recent review by the UK Veterinary Medicines Directorate found that 26 veterinary drugs were being tested on animals when there was no longer any scientific need. The review prompted a change in the licences for these drugs, sparing an estimated 38,000 animals over the next five years.
The review was prompted by a BUAV investigation into Wickham Laboratories in Hampshire in 2009 which found that the laboratory was conducting horrendous rabbit and mouse tests for some veterinary drugs that international regulations no longer required.
It is a disgrace that animals have continued to be used for years in tests that were no longer required by international regulations. Once again, it calls into question the Home Office and research industry’s claims that animals are only used when absolutely necessary. The Home Office should be enforcing this legal requirement and regulators given the power to force companies to keep up to date with scientific and regulatory requirements in order to reduce animal experiments.