Undercover Investigation Documents Misery for Dogs, Cats, and Rabbits

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A nine-month PETA undercover investigation found that hundreds of dogs, cats, and rabbits were subjected to vicious and abusive handling, neglect, and miserable living conditions at Professional Laboratory and Research Services, Inc. (PLRS)—a Corapeake, North Carolina-based contract laboratory that tested companion animal products such as flea and tick sprays and spot treatments on animals. Industry giants—including Bayer, Eli Lilly, Pfizer, Novartis, Schering-Plough (now Merck), Sergeant's, Wellmark, and Merial, the makers of Frontline flea and tick products—are among the corporations that have paid PLRS in the past to force-feed experimental compounds to dogs and cats and smear chemicals onto the animals' skin.

PETA's investigation revealed that dogs, cats, and rabbits used by PLRS suffered from untreated illnesses, injuries, and burns and that many animals were covered in sores because they couldn't escape the urine, bleach, and water that pooled in the facility's cages. Many animals at the facility frequently exhibited stress-induced abnormal behavior resulting from anxiety and boredom. Animals were often forced to sit in their own waste and many were sprayed with bleach and other harsh chemicals when the cages that they were being kept in were cleaned while the animals were still in them. A PLRS supervisor said that the untreated sores were "just part of ... life" at the facility.

PETA's investigator also documented that PLRS employees kicked, threw, grabbed, dropped, and dragged dogs; roughly grabbed and lifted rabbits by their ears; violently threw and slammed cats into cages; and viciously cursed at animals, calling them names such as "asshole," "bitch," and "motherfucker."

Animals at PLRS were used in cruel and painful tests. In one experiment that was conducted for a major corporation whose products are stocked on store shelves nationwide, a test chemical was applied to the necks of 57 cats. The cats exhibited severe adverse reactions that day, suffering seizures and bleeding from the nose and mouth. In spite of the extreme and obvious reactions, the cats were exposed to the chemical for a second time that very same day. Rabbits at PLRS were intentionally and repeatedly forced to "wear" a tightly wrapped capsule containing thousands of ticks and were then killed.

While PLRS has closed its doors and has surrendered its animals—thanks in large part to your e-mails, letters, phone calls, and support of PETA—countless others are still being used by other laboratories in the development and testing of companion animal products. Please be a voice for these animals.

Take a minute of your time today to urge pharmaceutical companies to use only non-animal methods in the development and testing of companion animal products.

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