College and University Students

Don't Want to Harm Animals in Your Education?
You Don't Have To.

Every year, millions of animals are dissected or killed in schools and universities on various grade levels. Cats, frogs, fetal pigs, grasshoppers, mink, earthworms, rats, mice, dogs, pigeons, and turtles are just some of the several species used. While most animals are purchased as dead specimens, many are subjected to painful and lethal procedures while still alive.

Over the past several decades, educators have increasingly begun to question the value of this use of animals. Now teachers and professors recognize that students can learn equally as well through the use of modern technology. There is also an important lesson taught when not using real animals; students learn to respect living beings and begin to appreciate and understand the role of animals in nature. This is fundamental to biology, the study of life.

Students, ranging from elementary school to college, commonly dissect dead animals to learn about anatomy. In other cases, teachers, who most likely have no veterinary or animal care training will kill animals after demonstrating their physiological functions. 'Pithing,' for example, involves the insertion of a sharp object into an animal's skull and moving it around vigorously to 'scramble' the brain. This is a common practice for rendering frogs and turtles 'brain-dead' for physiology experiments. In other cases, animals are anaesthetized and some organs are removed while they are still alive. The animals are euthanized at the end of the lab. Other 'life' sciences area of study that use animals in laboratory exercises include psychology, behavior, nutrition, and genetics.