Ricky Gervais and After Life co-star Peter Egan welcome rescued laboratory Beagle Betsy, who is helping their campaign to end experiments on dogs, and other animals. Ricky Gervais and After Life co-star Peter Egan are campaigning to end experiments on dogs and other animals, and they’re welcoming the help of beautiful Beagle dog Betsy, who was rescued from a laboratory dog breeder when she was just a pup. Betsy is joining the science-based campaign For Life On Earth (FLOE) as Beagle Ambassador; her rescue by the Dogs Trust came as she was about to be sold to a cruel toxicology laboratory.
Dogs like Betsy are intensively bred in the UK, for experiments that are permitted on otherwise protected companion animals, because laboratory animals are excluded from the 2006 Animal Welfare Act and the protection of its unnecessary suffering clause.
In a recent Westminster Hall debate, Martyn Day MP, said, “It strikes me as unbelievable that, in this nation of professed animal lovers, laboratory animals are categorically excluded from the 2006 Act. We must not forget that this includes dogs and cats, who many of us take into our homes to love and care for and who enrich our lives. The 2006 Act legalises, for example, the daily force feeding of chemicals directly into the stomachs of factory farmed puppies without pain relief or anaesthetic.”
Experiments on puppies, and other animals, are now widely reported to be entirely failing the search for human treatments and cures. 99% of experiments on dogs take place under the guise of human medicine; the latest Home Office statistics show that 67% of those experiments involved the force-feeding of chemicals directly into puppies’ stomachs, with no pain relief or anaesthetic. This shockingly cruel procedure is classified as ‘mild suffering’ by the Home Office.
The medical failure of such experiments for humans is today widely reported in the scientific literature, including by the British Medical Journal;  the Food and Drug Administration – which says nine out of ten new medicines fail to pass human trials because animals cannot predict human responses  – and the US-based National Cancer Institute, which says we have lost cures for cancer because studies in rodents have been believed. 
Experts working in the pharmaceutical industry also openly acknowledge the failure of animal models in their drug development process, and write about this often in the scientific literature. Leading scientists Drs. Ray Greek and Niall Shanks have named Trans-Species Modelling Theory, where current understanding of evolutionary biology and complexity science explains why animals are failing as predictive models of humans.
Ricky Gervais says, “Meeting Betsy was beautiful; she’s a tender gentle dog who is now enjoying a happy life in her loving forever home. It’s terrible to think that Betsy started life in the brutal environment of a laboratory breeder, where dogs are crammed into small cells with no outside walks, forced to endure repetitive pacing back and forth, unable to escape the stench of uncleaned floors and the despair which fills their minds. The experiments laboratory animals are bred for fail humans too: it’s time for the fair and transparent EDM 278 science hearing, to stop the false claims about human medicine which fund this appalling cruelty to dogs, and other animals.”
110 cross-party MPs signed last session’s Early Day Motion (EDM) calling for the Government to mandate a rigorous public scientific hearing, to prove these cruel experiments are also failing the search for human treatments and cures.
This Motion has been re-tabled as EDM 278, and its hearing will be judged by a panel of independent experts from the relevant science fields, including evolutionary biology, complexity science, basic research, genetics, drug development, chaos theory, clinical research and philosophy of science.MPs state that the EDM 278 science hearing will enable precious funding to be redirected to human-based research, such as gene-based medicine, which has track record of success.
Peter Egan says, “Meeting Betsy was wonderful; she endured such a horrific start in life, with no love or human kindness, but like all dogs her unconditional love shines through and shows us how truly beautiful animals are. Betsy was rescued from an overcrowded prison cell at a laboratory dog breeder in Ireland, where she was denied fresh air and walks; only the sound of clanging metal gates and the howls of traumatised fellow dogs met her ears.
The total medical failure of animal experiments, in the search for human treatments and cures, is today widely reported, including by the British Medical Journal and the FDA, which says that nine out of ten new medicines fail to pass human trials, because animals cannot predict human responses. I applaud the 110 cross-party MPs who are now calling for a top science hearing to judge claims that animal experiments ‘save human lives’. The Government is being duped by an outdated financial vested interest in the archaic practice of animal experimentation, and the EDM 278 science hearing will stop that, once – and for all.”
Please take action to help!
Simply type in your postcode at this link to ask your MP to sign Parliament EDM 278, for a science hearing to prove that experiments on dogs, and other animals, are also failing humans. Please write to your MP today! For Life On Earth (eaction.online)
1. BMJ 2014; 348: g 3719 (available here)
2. FDA Issues Advice to Make Earliest Stages Of Clinical Drug Development More Efficient. FDA, June 2006
3. Gura T: ‘Cancer Models: Systems for identifying new drugs are often faulty’. Science. 1997, 278 (5340): 1041-1042.
Betsy’s website Betsy Beagle
Last Parliament sessions EDM Public scientific hearing on animal experiments – Early Day Motions – UK Parliament
The newly tabled EDM 278 Public scientific hearing on animal experiments – Early Day Motions – UK Parliament