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THE CARE AND TREATMENT OF ANIMALS DWIGHTJ. INGLE As between man and the animals, man comes first. This is the law oflife. But when man uses or destroys the animal for man's own protection, aid or other interests, such use or destruction must be done without cruelty. I regard kindness to all animals as one ofthe finest and fairest fruits of human development , especially when the emotion of kindness is tempered and directed by a profound understanding of the complexity, beauty and unity of all life, man, animal and plant.—A.J. Carlson. The infliction ofunnecessary pain on animals has been known wherever man has had contact with them. It has occurred in hunting and trapping, in fishing, in the transportation, branding, marketing, and castrating of animals, in the extermination ofpests, in the slaughterhouse, and in spectator sports where animals are used. Not many years ago it was an occasional "sport" in some communities of the West to skinjackrabbits and watch their agonized run to death, or douse them with gasoline and ignite it. It is a matter ofcommon knowledge that large numbers ofpets are inhumanely killed by their owners or ill-fed and ill-sheltered or abandoned widiin cities or along country roads to shift for themselves. As a farm boy, Isometimes saw animals mistreated. Horses were scarred by beating with chains or bull whips. I have seen fires built under balky horses and on other occasions a pitchfork plunged into die flank of a horse or cow. Dogs and other animals were also beaten and sometimes farm animals were malnourished. But most farmers did not abuse their animals and diey disapproved of those who did. As animal husbandry improved and as more and more farm boys and girls were trained in various farm clubs, especially in die 4-H program, mistreatment offarm animals declined to a minimum. 256 DwightJ. Ingle · Care and Treatment ofAnimals Perspectives in Biology and Medicine · Winter 1963 All great developments in medical science have necessarily involved animals, either in basic research or in testing proposed procedures prior to clinical use on patients. Each new drug must be tested for toxicity before it is given a trial in man. Physicians and surgeons cannot be trained without the use ofanimals in teaching laboratories. Some kinds of research on animals before effective anesthetic agents were available must have caused severe pain, just as did surgery in man. An account ofthe early uses ofanimals by some researchers would offend most present-day scientists. But the growth ofexperimental medicine was accompanied by the development ofan ethics ofanimal experimentation so that responsible leaders aimed toward humane care and treatment of laboratory animals. While there is no objective information on the incidence ofcruelty to animals within any group, it is probable that the total amounts of substandard care and treatment associated with scientific laboratories is far lower than with any other type of contact between man and lower animals. Nevertheless, any at all is too much and should be avoided by the most effective means available. Some societies for the prevention of cruelty to animals have worked intelligently and effectively and deserve great credit for progress. When they have understood medical research and the humane care and treatment oflaboratory animals, they have won support ofbiologists and physicians. Other societies, the antivivisectionists, have opposed all animal experimentation . Whether their opposition has been based upon lunacy or ignorance , they have placed themselves squarely in the way of medical progress and on the side ofhuman suffering—and, ironically, against animals as well by denying veterinary medicine and animal husbandry the benefits of medical research. Achievement of the aims of the antivivisectionists would be one ofthe most Inhumane affronts ofman against man. Animal experimentation is practiced legally in all states, for the public has remained strongly on the side ofmedical research. Scientists are properly concerned with the threat ofrestrictive national legislation which is sponsored by a third group of laymen interested in animal care. These are intelligent, sincere individuals who appreciate the fact that most medical research involves animal experimentation. They aim for the optimal care and treatment oflaboratory animals but do not have complete insight into the problems ofmedical research. I shall not...

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Additional Information

ISSN
1529-8795
Print ISSN
0031-5982
Pages
pp. 256-263
Launched on MUSE
2015-01-07
Open Access
No
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