Thursday, August 19, 2010

The University of Kansas Medical Center has become known for violating the Animal Welfare Act….

Posted by thomaspainescorner


By Michael Budkie

Simulposted with SAEN
[Editor's note: Please call and email the parties detailed at the end of the article to help end the nightmare that KU Med has manufactured for its primate "patients."]

According to the annual report filed with the USDA by the University of Kansas Medical Center, this facility experiments on and/or holds captive about 150 primates per year, a relatively small amount. The report which contains this statistic is a bland one page document which belies the cruel reality that it represents.

A cross-section of the lives of these animals is represented by a stack of documents which is just over a foot tall. The existence of these highly intelligent animals has been reduced to so much paper and ink. Their identities represented only by numbers, their passing marked only by the word “euthanized.”

The University of Kansas Medical Center has become known for violating the Animal Welfare Act. In fact, recent inspections for the period from September 2007 to June of 2009 catalogue 58 pages of violations, many of which involve primates and their deaths. The USDA inspectors who wrote these documents uncovered heinous acts of cruelty which prolonged the pain these animals endured. One monkey was allowed to deteriorate so severely that his/her weight dropped by 26.8%, or just over ¼. Another primate, whose skull had been opened to have a recording chamber put into place, did not receive anything close to adequate treatment. These recording chambers can harbor serious bacterial infections which can lead to brain abscesses, and so they are supposed to be cleaned regularly. The chamber of one animal at this facility had not been cleaned for three weeks. It is amazing that s/he was still alive.

Another monkey who died during 2008, #0A0, lost 22% of his body weight, which should have been sufficient to qualify for euthanasia. However, the suffering of this animal was allowed to continue. The USDA report states: “He was sitting curled up on his perch while I was hosing his cage and would make a screeching sound. I gave him a cereal bar, but he was having difficulty picking it up. …

He is very feeble, he can’t stand on his legs; he scoots. His hand-eye coordination is very bad; he has a pronounced tremble in his hands and has to try several times to grab things. He is doing a lot of grimacing and makes a horrible screeching/chirping noise. … I know he is scheduled for tomorrow, but I am not sure he will make it that long.”

It is hard to believe that after being cited for such a cruel death that this facility would not alter protocols and procedures to prevent further deaths of this nature from taking place. Apparently this is not the case. Two other primates suffered fates very similar to #0A0 one year later.
Internal records from the University of Kansas Medical Center reveal that a rhesus monkey, #3A5, endured terrible pain on 8/4/2009: “increased agitation and stress from morphine withdrawal.” Other observations from the same day reveal continued agony: “Patient is agitated and vocalizing more. Appears to be more aggressive and keeps moving from perch to floor and back. … Patient is screeching very loudly when moving and grimacing a lot. Muscle tremors noted along with lying down in cage. … P.M. (8:00): Severe muscle tremors noted to the point that animal could not control his right leg and started to bite it; no lacerations or punctures noted.”

On the next day he is described as: “… similar to last night, severe muscle tremors when moving, a little ataxia with grimacing and screeching. … Noon: Patient is doing better, significant tremors still noted, but screeching has decreased, appetite and fluid consumption is good. Face is a little flushed as well as mildly swollen on the right side. Afternoon/evening: Patient is very aggressive. … Only about 20% of the Gatorade is gone from the a.m. Face is still flushed with possible hives.” On the following day, his torture continues unabated: “P.M. observation: Patient is having increased muscle tremors of legs and arms, will try and bite at feet if a large tremor occurs. No puncture wounds or lacerations noted on feet or legs.”

His record for 8/21/2009 shows that the monkey’s ordeal has continued for seventeen days: “patient with vomit in cage yesterday afternoon and this a.m.” On 8/25/2009, his record states, “Vomit all over cage and floor in front of cage. Food left in cage. … Right testicle is enlarged and left testicle is very small. Monkey is reserved today and will get up on perch only when approached.” On the next day: “his testicles are swollen, enlarged and scrotum has purplish hue. His eyes are sunken area around eyes are puffy and his pupils are dilated. He appears to be in pain from swollen scrotum. He will only move off of floor of cage with a lot of stimulation. … PI is consulting … about options.”

By the 27th of August he has deteriorated even further: “Monkey is very subdued and curled up on perch—will only move when stimulated a lot. Eyes are shrunken and dilated. Hair coat is spiked. Testicles are swollen, hard, and scrotum has purplish hue. Monkey did eat his biscuits, but it appeared that he vomited overnight.” #3A5 was apparently killed that day because a necropsy was performed.
Unbelievably, the life of #3A5 was not unique. Another male rhesus monkey, #84Z, suffered in a very similar fate, at about the same time. On 8/4/2009 primate 84Z is: “… screeching a lot, grimacing noted as well. Patient is lying [sic] down in the bottom of the cage and will only move when stimulated. Muscle tremors noted. Appetite is decreased—no biscuits eaten, but has eaten fruit. … Evening obs (8P.M.): Patient is down in the bottom of the cage laying [sic] on his side, will move when stimulated, but very reluctant.

Screeching is excessive and grimacing noted whenever moving; mild muscle tremors noted. Appetite is still decreased, has eaten some of the fruit provided, but no biscuits. He has not touched the Gatorade.”

His misery continues the next day: “A.M. observations: patient is very reluctant to move on stimulation. Once he got up, he screeched once and then fell back over. Moderate muscle tremors noted. Appetite is severely decreased; a couple of biscuits eaten and some fruit. P.M. observation: Patient is sitting up on the floor, but reluctant to move, even when squeeze was used. No screeching noted, but muscle tremors are present and significant.”

On the third day, his nightmare ends: “A.M. Observation: Patient is sitting up this a.m., but still reluctant to move. Face is very red, but screeching was not noted this a.m. Appetite is still decreased with only a small amount of fruit eaten; no biscuits. Noon: Patient is down in cage and not responding to stimulation. Notify PI and continue supportive care. After­noon: PI gave one does of morphine to try and offset withdrawal signs; no progress. Patient is down and only minimally responsive. 10:00 p.m.: Patient is euthanized per PI protocol.”

The symptoms described in these animals are at least partially due to withdrawal from morphine. They may have been subjected to other procedures which could have added to the seriousness of their condition. However, the issue here—the problem—is tolerance. During the process of addicting these animals to morphine, they develop a tolerance to the drug, just as humans do.

And so, when their bodies tolerate the drug, when they have developed a physical addiction to the drug, when we have forced morphine to become one of the defining characteristics of their existence, we take it away from them, precipitated crash withdrawal – which can be fatal.

The animals whom have been discussed here are not the only ones who suffer inside the University of Kansas Medical Center. The majority of these captives are described during at least one point of time as losing hair, due to over-grooming. They also often exhibit other abnormal behavior such as circling, pacing, etc. They were not designed to tolerate living in stainless steel cages. Several animals are listed as dying of dehydration.

As I read these documents, I also reach a point of tolerance. I can only psychologically handle so much. Monkeys vomiting all over their cages, too weak to move off the floor onto their perches, suffering from such severe tremors that they can only respond by attacking their own limbs.

It all becomes too much to bear, and I have to walk away. But the real question is, why do we, as a society, tolerate this? Even if we put aside the idea of how difficult it is to generalize from highly stressed psychologically abnormal macaque monkeys to human beings, even if there was some wonder cure to be found, don’t we reach a point, isn’t there a level at which it is just plain wrong? How much suffering are we willing to inflict on other animals, in the quest for a drug, vaccine, or treatment that might work? How utterly self-important are we?

Isn’t there a point where the potential benefits become irrelevant? Can’t we agree that some things are just too wrong, too painful, too difficult even to read—let alone experience—that they should never ever be allowed to happen? The question is, how can we, as a supposedly enlightened society, tolerate this?

If we will not say that some things—no matter what they might bring, are wrong—then we should be honest with ourselves and abolish all laws governing the way that animals are treated in labs. If anything goes, then we should remove the restrictions that we have put in place solely to give our consciences ground upon which to stand. Remove the smoke and mirrors we have put in place to assuage our guilt. Rip away the curtain. Take a good hard look at what we are willing to do. These are the facts and we had better be able to live with ourselves.

But, and I sincerely hope that this is true, if we as a species are willing to say that there are limits which should never ever be crossed, then we must go down a different road. If we actually believe that some things are simply wrong and can never be right, no matter what, then we must make radical changes about the way animals are treated in laboratories.

Some things simply should not be tolerated. Human beings should not perform them, animals should not endure them, and people who care deeply about animals should not have to read them.

Contact Barbara Atkinson, KU Med’s Executive Vice Chancellor, and tell her that what KU Med is doing to primates is wrong and to stop wasting our tax money on cruelty and fraudulent science! She is at (913) 588-1440 and


Contact Francis Collins, Director of the National Institute of Health (KU Med’s source of funding) at 301-496-2433 and and tell him to stop providing public monies to a “research facility” that was cited for 160 violations of animal welfare laws by the USDA!

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30 Responses to “The University of Kansas Medical Center has become known for violating the Animal Welfare Act….”


  2. Monique Trolliet said

    Je suis désolée, mais je n’ai pas tout compris, mon anglais n’est pas bon. Je pense que j’ai compris l’essentiel et je souhaite dire que je défend la cause animale partout où elle a besoin d’être défendue. Je croyais naivement que les USA que j’adore, étaient plus en avance que nous en France. Je suis déçue. Ce n’est pas digne d’une grande nation de faire subir des tortures à des animaux. Ils ont cette terre en partage avec les hommes et nous leurs devons le respect.

  3. Iris Neuwirth said

    Shame on you ! To abuse or kill innocent animals – GOD´S CREATURES !!!!!!!!!!!!

  4. Lyn Picone said

    These are living creatures which feel pain and bleed just as we humans do. Their purpose on earth was never meant to be thus. We condemned the Nazis for attrocities committed on human beings. These heinous acts are as bad and yet committed in the name of science. These poor animals do not deserve this treatment and should not be subjected to the cruelty which you are perpetuating. I hope that you and those carrying out these barbaric practices are judged by God. You may argue that you are in reality looking to benefit mankind. I am sorry, the end does not justify the means. Show compassion to these beautiful animals, stop the experimentation.

    • Julia D. Stewart said

      I agree, but obviously these so called “scientists” do not care about the pain and suffering they cause. I wonder if they actually enjoy torturing defenceless animals. Something must be very wrong with these individuals, if they do not feel compassion.

      I am outraged.

  5. Vivisectionists suffer the most in life after death because then they have to endure all the pain and suffering they themselves inflicted whilst on earth.

  6. Anastasia Karagiannidis said

    How do sleep at night knowing that there are sentient beings suffering on account of what you are doing to them???

    What does one have to do to get through to people like you?? Where is your compassion?

    I suppose if there was copmassion there wouldn’t be such cruelty.

    I can only appeal to whatever is human in you to PLEASE end these poor animals’ suffering.

    PLEASE look into your heart…

  7. Pat Pardo said

    create animals for killing? It’s like Nazism!!!!!! STOP TORTURE!!

  8. Irma said

    It’s devastating which horrific cruelty human being inflict on to fellow animals!

    I am wondering that this is tolerated (and most probably inflicted by) in an environment which is heavily shaped by rather orthodox Christians.

    Those people who walk their souls of their shoes thin to church must go berserk knowing what happens in those places.

  9. rex tyler said

    There is no need to injure

    to damage or cause pain

    already these wild animals

    are caged and under strain

  10. carine rostoucher said


  11. carine rostoucher said

    STOP!!! PLEASE!! all abuse or kill innocent ANIMALS*** IN THE NAME OF *GOD* OPEN YOU HEART AND YOUR MIND*

  12. Chantal Buslot said

    Albert Sweitzer said, “It is the fate of every truth to be an object of ridicule when it is first acclaimed. It was once considered foolish to suppose that black men were really human beings and ought to be treated as such. What was once foolish has now become a recognized truth. Today it is considered as exaggeration to proclaim constant respect for every form of life as being the serious demand of a rational ethic. But the time is coming when people will be amazed that the human race existed so long before it recognized that thoughtless injury to life is incompatible with real ethics. Ethics is in its unqualified form extended responsibility to everything that has life.”
    God’s beautiful creatures were not created for uncaring, merciless humans to murder, to torture.

  13. Candace said

    Reading what truly goes on in a “research” facility is digusting. How do those people work in an environment like that? Where’s their compassion and empathy for these primates??

  14. hess said

    stop torturing animals there is no excuse at all for such actions!!

  15. Inger Martinsen said

    Please stop it!!

  16. Aquitaine Hall said

    The University of Kansas Medical Centre now has an international reputation for violating the Animal Welfare Act. This is not a record to be proud of and is actually quite shameful. Please stop these experiments – they really serve no useful purpose. None of the data can be reliably extrapolated for human application. It is experimenting for experimenting’s sake. This exploitation desensitizes and we all lose, slowly but surely.

  17. David Hall said

    Please stop this cruel exploitation of animals.

  18. Ricardo Setticasi said

    Letter sent to the NIH with a CC to and my federal representative. Thank you for all that you do Michael, on behalf of the animals. May they soon be free from their enslavement and torture.

  19. Julia D. Stewart said

    This bsrbaric torture MUST stop. I wonder what kind of people are the ones who do it? So, you build a specially designed device for torturing, you put the poor animal there and you can abuse it in any way you wish. In the name of science? Please, give me a break. A scientist without moral is useless. You are monsters, not humans and this is why the modern science is in such a sorry state.
    I can go on, but I think, I said enough. I will pray to God for your appropriate punisment. You will get it, sooner or later.

  20. erika mock said

    stoppt die tierqual

  21. Michele & the Meow Mansion said

    Karma…what goes around, comes around. I am placing a curse on those involved with unduly attributing to the suffering and inhumane treatment of animals. Your day of reckoning will come.
    Karma. Keep that word in mind.

  22. Jazzi said

    SHAME on you for acting like Hitler on Gods creatures!!! God will rain he vengance on you on HIS day!!!! Animals were put here to love and cherish , not experiment on!!! Save that for the ones who abuse and harm animals and children!!!!!!!

  23. COMTESSE said

    stop aux violation des lois en matière de droit animal, pour une UNIVERSITE qui rassemble l’élite ce n’est pas honnête !

  24. Now the choice is between humans and animals as subjects to scientific studies. Who is it gonna be? But, I definitely do not agree with toruturing the animals in the process. Let’s be more humane.

  25. sent

  26. Cindi said

    This is seriously sadistic. There is no need to cause pain and suffering in animals at all. The people who do this LIKE to do this and cannot sell me on the notion they are doing it for some “greater” purpose. Bulls#*t. It is nothing more than a complete lack of respect for life and arrogance beyond repair. It is criminal.

  27. dani said


  28. rex tyler said

    behind their bars in tiny little cages

    Our friends the monkeys live out their sad lives

    Not tearing around the tree tops in the jungle

    Where the wild and natural simian survives

    Trapped and brought across the sea to Kansas

    And experimented on, its seems to me

    These so called frantic Scientists should

    experiment on themselves

    Not mess with precious primates personally

    Opening up their skulls for a spot of tinkering

    Is hardly what God put them on earth for

    How they draw their salaries for torturing our wild life

    A practice that does sicken to the core

    These creatures were not born to die in squalor

    These creatures were not born for you to play

    Destruction of a being is not Science

    And torturing to death is not the way

  29. adele said

    the threshold between right and wrong is pain … XIV Dalai Lama. a world of torture, pain, abuse of the strong over the weak is not a fair world … I reject this injustice … no excuse is acceptable … none

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