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Is Animal Experimenting morally acceptable?

Animals have the right to be treated as beings of value in themselves, not as the means to human ends; this principle must be applies in order to guarantee the end of cruelty to animals. The application of this principle means that animals should never be experimented upon whatever the potential gain for humanity. To infect monkeys with the AIDS virus or to expose rodents to toxic chemicals and radiation is simply not acceptable, whatever the supposed benefits

  • Jan 24 2012: I think it's wrong when the answers are already in books, yet the experiments are repeated.
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    Jan 24 2012: Morally I would state that it is almost certainly wrong given that we do not know what it is like to be that animal and while it may seem like its life, its experiences are of no value for all we know a fly could have more meaningful experiences than humans or apes do..

    Now on a more pragmatic level, I am well aware that there are good reasons (and sometimes evidence) to believe why some animals or insects are exposed to a lesser range of suffering and well-being than others. I am also well aware that in spite of saying these things, such experiments do provide insightful scientific knowledge and more often than not serves a suitable purpose in the world, so very sadly, I would have to take a utilitarian approach and state that if some experimentation leads to a cure for cancer, then I would be all for experimentation.

    I must say though, it is sort of depressing to even say such a thing, despite the range of experience an animal or insect can have.
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    Feb 13 2012: Hi, Vicky, glad to meet u here~
    In my understanding, moral is not so well-defined strictly as law like,to anybody the law there is unchangeable in agivenperiod,but moral can be show as different understanding in different peoples‘ mind,so to me the animal experimenting maybe acceptable but to u maybe not。The morl itself doesn't decide whether acceptable or not,the decision is in hands of people in different conditions,if someone‘s friends or relatives...suffer the pain of disease like AIDS which until now have not resolved in the medical area,he or she may accept that experimenting things,because that’s a indispensable way to test the effect of new medicine,after all,the friends or relatives is most important than animal to him or her!
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    Jan 24 2012: This all depends on what morals a person holds. I have no issues eating animals, this may be seen as cruelty to others. I debate that there is no real answer to the question 'what is morally acceptable'.
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    Jan 24 2012: I do think that minimizing suffering in various species is essential, especially when 1. there is no real practical benefit from animal experimenting (e.g cosmetics) 2. there are alternatives (e.g cell models). Unnecessary experimenting should be discouraged and alternative models actively pursued.

    I don't want to lump all animals together though. I'd enthusiastically encourage the end of testing on any member of the Great Ape family, but I don't have such qualms over mice models. We need to prioritize and not fall into the fallacy of thinking there is the Human Species and then there's everyone else. Conferring particular rights to our closest cousin is most urgent. An animal that can actually sign language is too smart not to deserve serious ethical considerations.
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    Jan 23 2012: I hear what you're saying, and to some extent I am inclined to agree.
    There are infact methods of human testing that (in many cases) are not necessarily hazerdous and would provide better assessments from the patient.
    One example is micro-scale use of the drug with a gradual increase of strength/duration overtime. Another is to have the tests conducted on the dead who donate their bodies to medical science.

    It wouldn't eliminate the testing of Animals (because ofcourse, both options above have limitations), but it would play a significant role in limiting the use of it.
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    Jan 23 2012: So it is therefore better to have accidents occur in human population without knowing the effects of those chemicals or radiations.

    Or have tests occur on human population, but of course always officially "by accident" so we know what kills the most efficiently in all these chemicals and radioactive products out there so we can defend ourselves when it's time with the most efficient weapon of mass destruction.

    Right ?

    What's better ? Animal experimenting or accidental experimenting ?
    • Jan 23 2012: But why test on animals when there are alternatives? Did you know the chemical/ cosmetic tests they carry out on rodents, cats, dogs, and other mammals and cold blooded animals is just pointless because their reaction to the product is not guaranteed to have the same reactions on humans, in fact their genomes are not more than 50% the same as us, so it doesn't tell us if they are safe or not.
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        Jan 23 2012: If an eye drop causes painful destruction of the eye and eventual total, irreversible blindness in a rat it will not be made available to the public. Do you advocate sparing the rat and letting the first few customers who use the drops discover its horrible consequences? Or do you advocate terminating the development of any new medical treatments? Pick one.
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        Jan 23 2012: I agree with Edward, cosmetic testing is a whole other world to medical testing. Testing products on animals for profit has more argument to being morally wrong than using animals for medical research.

        Science uses animals in order to achieve a balance between harm to humans, and life that is sacrificed. Animal testing involves breeding animals for that single purpose, the animals would not be alive if they were not involved in the experiment. The rules and regulations that exist around animal testing are very strict (at least in the UK), and follow the '3Rs', Reduction, Refinement and Replacement. Animals arent used just because they can be, it is extremely expensive (not just economically) to use animals in scientific research, but the benefit outweighs the loss. Reduction rules ensure only the minimum numbers are used, Refinement ensures that the experiments performed answer the question with the least amount of problems, and Replacement means that if cell culture, or drosophila, or zebrafish can be used instead of mice, rats or higher vertebrates - they are.

        Animals maintained for medical research are kept in the best conditions. they are kept social, in perfect temperatures and lighting, with no prey or lack of food source. they are treated with great respect and more humanely than we treat each other. Why are they treated with respect? because without them we would not have the basic scientific understanding of how life works, and how we can intervene to save millions of lives. not just human, but animal. where do veterinary drugs and knowledge come from? In order for a better future, sacrifice is required today.