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Stop Animal Exploitation NOW!
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Media Coverage

Baboon incident upsets animal rights groups

Web Posted: 02/11/2008 09:29 PM CST
Cindy Tumiel

Two animal rights groups want Southwest Foundation for Biomedical Research stripped of federal grant funding because of a 2006 incident in which foundation veterinarians mistakenly began a necropsy on a baboon that was not yet dead. Stop Animal Exploitation Now, which seeks to end the use of animals in biomedical research, and San Antonio-based Wildlife Rescue and Rehabilitation complained to the National Institutes of Health and the U.S. Department of Agriculture about the incident involving a baboon that veterinarians decided to euthanize after it suffered a back injury. The incident demonstrated "blatant disregard for federal law and animal lives," Michael Budkie, executive director of the anti-exploitation group, said in a release.

Robert Shade, associate scientific director at the foundation, said veterinarians began a necropsy after giving the baboon a standard dose of a drug commonly used to euthanize animals. A few minutes into the procedure, Shade said, a pathologist detected a faint pulse, and veterinarians administered another dose of a euthanizing drug to kill the animal.

An inspection report by the USDA in April 2007 cited the foundation for several deficiencies of program protocols, which Shade said have been corrected.

Budkie said the foundation should lose the federal grant money it gets to operate its baboon colony.

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