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WI ranks among worst states for dog experiments

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WAUSAU, Wis. (WAOW)--- The Humane Society of the United States published a recent report listing Wisconsin in the top five of worst states for dog experiments.

According to the organization, on average, over 58,000 dogs per year are experimented on in the US.

Wisconsin contributes over 5,500 dogs to this total.

"Most people are surprised to find out we are still using dogs in laboratories today, and it's legal," said Kathleen Conlee, Vice President of Animal Research Issues for HSUS.

Local humane societies say north central Wisconsin doesn't have any sites but there are two major ones in Wisconsin that contribute to the high placement. Covance and Ridglan Farms INC., which are both located in Dane County.

Ridglan specifically supplies dogs to testing facilities, where as Covance conducts testing.

"We are saying we need to be looking at whether or not this is necessary, and we argue that it is in fact not necessary," said Conlee.

The non-profit organization "Americans for Medical Progress" pushes back on that belief.

Claiming dogs provide specific and are a necessary part of medical research, because a dogs heart is very similar to a humans.

"They've been really important in some treatments for heart disease. There's not that many dogs in research, they're a very small part of it,but a very specific part," said Paula Clifford, Executive Director of Americans for Medical Progress.

But the Humane Society believes dog deserve better.

"Never touching grass, they ultimately die before ever leaving the facility…Its heart breaking because they still trust humans," said Conlee.

But it's important to note, that similar testing on animals other than dogs is what lead to the creation of important treatments for COVID-19.

Despite a difficult subject, and both having opposite views, each organization hopes that one day testing on dogs will end.

Chase McNamara

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