UW surrenders more images from the Tom Yin Lab.

Sound Localization Images

Released to People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA)

Below is a series of images released in July 2013 to People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) under Wisconsin’s open records law. The images, from a procedure performed in 2009, show a surgical procedure to place a cochlear implant into a cat, the subject of a hearing study. Earlier images were used by PETA, an organization that objects to the use of all animal models in research, to misrepresent the clinical and technological value of the work, as well as the treatment and condition of the animals used in the study. We are posting the images to preempt their misuse and continued mischaracterization of a study that has demonstrated clinical and technological benefit for humans. Read the university’s full article here.

See too:  More images from the Yin Lab.

The Badger Herald · PETA, university continue to stand at odds over USDA report

1500-double-trouble-10University of Wisconsin researchers and People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals continue to stand at odds concerning the cause of a federal agency investigation that resulted in a citation because the treatment of a cat in an experiment at a UW lab.

A UW research lab did not appeal a citation by the United States Department of Agriculture after inspectors found a case of a cat suffering a burn when the chemical hand-warmer used to keep the cat warm fell off during a surgery last April.

Eric Sandgren, UW’s Research Animal Resource Center director, said the university has been transparent about the standing citation and posted the USDA report on the university website as soon as they learned that the appeal had failed.

He added that he did not think the citation should stand because appropriate steps have been taken and new guidelines were put in place after the accident.

“The bottom line is that, yes we made a mistake. That’s been posted on our website for two weeks, right after we got the citation from USDA. I don’t know why PETA all of a sudden is bringing it up,” Sandgren said.

UW received two citations during the investigation in December and successfully appealed one, he added.

PETA spokesperson Jeremy Beckham said the report was obtained through the Freedom of Information Act and confirmed PETA’s allegations of “unrelieved, ongoing suffering of cats” in the UW lab.

Beckham also said the university has been falsely claiming to be free of all citations from USDA even though it had been notified in December and has been appealing the citations for two months.

“They knew that they were cited right when the inspector was on campus last December…and they just lost their appeal,” Beckham said. “For the past three months, the [University of Wisconsin] has been lying about what happened with the USDA investigation.”

The USDA investigation report from last December, which is on the university website, labels the investigation a “routine investigation.”

According to Sandgren, the report would have labeled it a “focused investigation” if it had been a response to PETA’s second set of complaints filed last year.

“The USDA did not separate us,” Sandgren said. “PETA is being very disingenuous. That was not a response to their allegations at least to the best of our knowledge.”

PETA filed two separate complaints against the university, one last April and another last December.

UW received no citation from USDA from the focused investigation in response to the first set of complaints.

“USDA did not find merit in any of the eight charges filed against us in the first PETA complaint,” Sandgren said. “[UW has] received no citation from their second set of complaints against the university.”

Sandgren said he has not seen the second sets of complaints filed by PETA, which is only available through filing an open information request.

PETA included five charges against the university in the second complaint alleging serious animal welfare violations, which are distinct from the previous allegations.

Sandgren said he has heard about the new complaints but cannot comment on the allegations before looking at the actual report.

“We filed [a request to obtain the report] in March but we haven’t got it yet, you can imagine how frustrated we are,” he said.

The USDA did not reply for comment as of press time.

The Badger Herald · PETA, university continue to stand at odds over USDA report.

UW-Madison Cat Cruelty Confirmed by Feds | PETA.org

Following a complaint filed by PETA, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) has confirmed PETA’s allegations of rampant abuse of cats in a taxpayer-funded brain experiment at the University of Wisconsin–Madison (UW), where actor James Cromwell was arrested during a protest last month. The USDA also cited UW for violating federal animal protection laws by burning a cat named Broc so badly with a heating pad that she required surgery.

In a scathing report just obtained by PETA, a federal inspector found “a pattern of recurring infections” and that all the cats whom PETA profiled in its complaint had been “diagnosed with chronic infections” after having steel posts screwed into open wounds on their heads and metal coils implanted into their eyes. Read full article by clicking the link below.

Victory: UW-Madison Cat Cruelty Confirmed by Feds | PETA.org.

Jeremy Beckham: UW’s cruelty to cats should be stopped : Ct

Jeremy Beckham: UW’s cruelty to cats should be stopped – March 2, 2013, Capital Times

Academy award-nominated actor James Cromwell and I were recently arrested for protesting at a meeting of the University of Wisconsin Board of Regents for its failure to take action to end horribly cruel and wasteful experiments on cats at UW-Madison. UW’s response has been to distort, deny and dismiss well-documented cruelty in its laboratories and attempt to silence dissent about the issue.1500-double-trouble-10

Despite UW’s shenanigans, the truth is out and these barbaric studies should end now.

According to documents that People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals obtained from UW through a public records request and subsequent lawsuit, experimenters cut cats’ heads open, screwed steel rods to their skulls, implanted electrodes in their brains, and placed metal coils in their eyes. Some cats were deafened and had electrical devices implanted into their ears. The cats were then starved for up to six days straight because when they’re so hungry they will cooperate in experiments in exchange for a morsel of food. As a result of all this trauma, nearly every cat PETA obtained records on — including Broc, Cali, Daisy, Mama Grey, Marble, Patches, Slinky, Tiger and Timmy — suffered from constant infections, illnesses, physical pain and depression.

This was graphically documented by UW staff in photos they never imagined the public would see and fought tooth-and-nail to keep secret. The images depict a cat called Double Trouble with a metal post and wires protruding from her head. One of her eyes is half-closed because her face was partially paralyzed by an apparently sloppy surgery.

Records show that she became lethargic and depressed. She started to twitch. Her head wound never healed. More than three months after surgery, records describe the wound as “open, moist w/bloody purulent discharge, (with) moderate swelling.”

Each horrifying detail above is taken directly from records that were written in UW staff and faculty’s own hands, and captured with their own camera. A former UW veterinarian who worked in this laboratory has also confirmed PETA’s allegations of abuse.

Experimenters eventually killed and decapitated Double Trouble because she became too sick to continue and the devices implanted in her head didn’t work. While PETA objects to these experiments because they’re cruel, they’re also bad science. UW experimenters told colleagues that the project was a failure. Indeed, the experiment has never been published in any scientific journal, nor has any other cochlear implant experiment on cats from this laboratory. Yet UW has defended itself by deceptively claiming the suffering caused to Double Trouble has made important contributions to human hearing research.

Hundreds of thousands of U.S. citizens, Wisconsin residents, and taxpayers have urged the federal government and UW to end this publicly funded cruelty to animals. UW’s strategy for dealing with this exercise of democracy has been to block emails from the public, to diligently delete thousands of critical messages from its Facebook page, and to remove the contact information for Board of Regents members from its website.

I used to live in Madison and I’ve learned that the school will go to great lengths to shield itself from criticism. In 2006, following open records requests by myself and the Isthmus newspaper, UW destroyed 60 boxes of videotapes showing footage of experiments on monkeys. In 2011, PETA and Madison’s Alliance for Animals sought to have UW prosecuted for experiments in which they killed animals by decompression and forced mice to fight in apparent violation of state law. UW responded by successfully lobbying to completely exempt its experimenters from all state cruelty to animals statutes.

UW is more than happy to take our money to torment animals. But, unless you have some good lawyers, don’t start asking questions about it.


Jeremy Beckham is a research project manager for People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, based in Norfolk, Va. JeremyB@peta.org

 

Jeremy Beckham: UW’s cruelty to cats should be stopped : Ct.

Jeremy Beckham: UW researcher distorts, dismisses cruelty to cats : Wsj

1500-double-trouble-10Regarding Saturday’s guest column, “Cat research, after all the drama,” by UW-Madison research director Eric Sandgren:

UW’s response to criticism about its barbaric taxpayer-funded experiments on cats has been to distort, deny and dismiss the well-documented cruelty and to silence dissent. But the truth is out.

According to records written in UW staff and faculty’s own hands, and captured with their own camera, cats at UW had their heads cut open, steel rods screwed to their skulls, electrodes implanted in their brains, and metal coils placed in their eyes. Some were deafened and had cochlear devices implanted into their ears. They suffered from infections and pain. That the government didn’t cite UW for this abuse speaks to weaknesses of animal protection laws, not morality or science.

This isn’t helping people. None of this laboratory’s cochlear implant experiments on cats has ever been published in a scientific journal. Records show some couldn’t even be completed because the mutilated cats became too sick and were killed.

UW’s approach to dealing with peoples’ objections has been to block emails from the public, to delete messages from its Facebook page, and to remove Board of Regents members’ contact information from its website.

Despite UW’s shenanigans, hundreds of thousands of people have protested. The photos that show why are available for all to see at PETA.org/DoubleTrouble.

— Jeremy Beckham, Salt Lake City, research project manager, People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals

Jeremy Beckham: UW researcher distorts, dismisses cruelty to cats : Wsj.