Target: AstraZeneca Board of Directors
Goal: Release beagles from closed breeding facility to loving homes instead of inhumane laboratories
Animal testing is a harsh reality in the scientific community. Current legislation demands animal testing results in order for some pharmaceutical and chemical companies to put their products on the shelf. Painful experiments where animals are mutilated, force-fed poisonous substances and infected with deadly and painful diseases are commonplace in this type of research. Some animals are bred specifically for research and then shipped to a laboratory where they will live through painful experimentation before being put to death.
Biopharmaceutical company AstraZeneca set up one such breeding facility in Orkelljunga, Sweden where beagles were bred for experimentation. The beagles, chosen for their friendly and docile nature, are typically used in toxicology studies where they are slowly poisoned and then killed and dissected. The company recently announced the closure of the Orkelljunga facility, but sadly, that doesn’t mean freedom for the animals currently housed there.
Instead, the dogs will be sent to laboratories in the United Kingdom where they will be used for pharmaceutical testing. Not only will the beagles spend the rest of their lives enduring frightening tests, but they will have to make a stressful and potentially dangerous plane journey first. Although several activist groups have rallied around the cause and offered to help find loving homes for the beagles, AstraZeneca spokespeople have declined their offers, claiming that since the dogs were bred for research, the best solution is to ship them to another location and continue to use them for that purpose. Although AstraZeneca representatives claim the dogs cannot be rehabilitated since their entire lives have been spent in kennels, animal behavior experts have alleged the opposite and said the dogs could be easily trained in a new environment.
While animal testing regulations can take years to amend, the closure of this breeding facility could provide an unanticipated second chance for nearly 300 beagles. Put pressure on AstraZeneca to release the beagles to loving homes rather than shipping them to another location where they will probably die alone and in pain.
Dear AstraZeneca Board of Directors,
Animal testing is both cruel and inhumane. Animals are forced to endure painful, frightening tests and are often treated callously. After hearing about the closure of your Orkelljunga breeding facility in Sweden, I was dismayed to learn you plan to send the dogs housed there to the UK for testing instead of allowing them to be adopted into loving families.
Your plan will subject the beagles to the stress of being transported as cargo on an airplane in addition to a lonely and painful life in a testing facility. Beagles are well known for having a good tempered disposition and fit into family environments especially well. For this reason, they are a breed that is easily adoptable and in high demand. Not only are beagles naturally docile, but animal behavior experts have confirmed that they can be easily rehabilitated to transition smoothly from your facility to a family environment.
I urge you to give the beagles at the Orkelljunka facility the chance to live a long and happy life rather than dying alone and in pain at a UK laboratory.
[Your Name Here]
Photo Credit: Spesa Critica