Files Reveal Animal Welfare Violations at University of Minnesota

After discovering chronic and serious violations of federal animal welfare at University of Minnesota (UMN) laboratories, including failing to provide adequate pain relief to nearly 700 animals used in procedures painful and invasive, PETA has urged UMN President Joan TA Gabel to prohibit staff who do not comply with animal welfare regulations or guidelines given by veterinary staff from having any contact with animals. Federal records obtained by PETA reveal 47 offenses between January 2018 and September 2021.

Records show that negligence by University of Minnesota employees led to starvation, dehydration, and the death of many animals. These are among the violations:

  • Two mice were scalded to death when left in a cage that was sent to a high-temperature cage steamer used for sterilization.
  • Water for four monkeys was severely restricted, contrary to protocol.
  • The mice were not fed for four days, requiring emergency veterinary care.
  • On two occasions, monkeys were locked in a quadrant of a cage until 3 p.m. because employees failed to remove and secure the cage partitions.
  • A mouse was found alive in a euthanasia bag.
  • Experimenters performed unapproved tail amputations on 151 mice.

Despite these violations, the UMN received over $336 million taxpayer money from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) last year.

“Steaming animals and starving them for days on end is proof that many UMN lab workers need to be fired. PETA calls on UMN President to permanently expel violators from all animal laboratories and replacing animal experiments with modern research methods relevant to humans.

Kathy Guillermo, Senior Vice President of PETA

What you can do for animals suffering in laboratories

Numerous published studies have shown that animal testing wastes resources and lives, such as 95% of new drugs that prove effective in animals fail or cause harm in human clinical trials. Yet the largest funder of research in the United States, the NIH, devotes nearly half of its annual budget to animal studies. That’s $19.6 billion lost in 2021 alone.

PETA scientists Research modernization contract outlines a roadmap and strategy for maximizing our nation’s investment in research to cure disease – by ending funding for strategies that don’t work (i.e. animal experiments) and by investing in research relevant to humans.

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