Animal rights group launches campaign in Hastings

The campaign launch. Photo by Sid Saunders
The campaign launch. Photo by Sid Saunders

An animal rights group launched a campaign calling for the end of medical experiments on dogs by unveiling a billboard in Hastings last week.

On Thursday, May 17, animal rights group Cruelty Free International met at Hastings Railway Station to unveil its campaign poster.

The animal protection organisation was joined by Hastings dog owners – including local celebrity Carol Cleveland of Monty Python fame – to call for the end the use of dog testing in the UK within two years.

The group’s chief executive Michelle Thew said: “We think the residents of Hastings and across the UK will be horrified to learn that thousands of dogs are still used in cruel and unnecessary experiments every year. As a nation of animal lovers, the UK should lead the way in reducing animal testing.

“Dog experiments are unethical and outdated and there are many credible and effective alternatives that can be used instead. We call on the Home Office to review and put in place a roadmap to end the use of dogs in UK laboratories. We would be delighted to work with the government to end the needless suffering.”

According to Cruelty Free International, thousands of dogs are used in UK laboratories every year to test chemicals that often end up in drugs, pesticides or weed-killers. The groups says UK law means tests must often be carried out on rats or mice as well as a second species, usually dogs, before proposed medicines can move to clinical trials. The group says non-animal alternatives exist and urges a change in the law to reflect this.

Carol Cleveland said: “I’m delighted to be here today to support Cruelty Free International and speak out for those who can’t speak for themselves. I’m always happy to do anything that can help in the way of stopping unnecessary cruelty to all animals. I urge everyone to sign the Cruelty Free International petition and put a stop to these vile and unnecessary experiments.”

Photo by Sid Saunders.