Animal Research Facility Had 9 Violations in 1 Year: Fed Reports Cite Monkey's Death

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Animal Research Facility Had 9 Violations in 1 Year: Fed Reports Cite Monkey's Death


Jan. 6--The Lovelace Respiratory Research Institute violated the federal Animal Welfare Act nine times in a one-year period, according to inspection reports that cite the death of a monkey whose head got caught between a wall and the perch in her enclosure.

The reports, by a U.S. Department of Agriculture inspection service, covered the period between March 2008 and April 2009.

In another incident, a monkey escaped from its enclosure, according to a June 2008 report.

"Housing facilities for nonhuman primates must be designed, constructed and kept in good repair so they protect animals from injury and contain the animals securely," it said.

Other violations listed included drainage problems resulting in water and body waste accumulating in animal units, staff doing jobs for which they were unqualified and failure to consider procedures that may result in less pain to animals. The last violation was repeated over a period of years.

Robert W. Rubin, president and CEO of the institute, said the facility is monitored by several federal agencies, and although it has received notices of violations in the past, the problems are usually corrected quickly.

"The Lovelace Respiratory Research Institute, LRRI, undertakes hundreds of research projects a year designed to cure human disease," Rubin said in a statement. "Each incident is examined and animal husbandry procedures are immediately modified or corrected as suggested by the agency."

The institute does research on the prevention, treatment and cure of respiratory disease, according to its Web site. It conducts testing on a variety of animals including dogs, guinea pigs, rabbits, hamsters and monkeys, according to annual reports submitted to the USDA. Those reports said the facility also uses the animals to test biochemical agents that could be used by terrorists, among other things.

Michael A. Budkie, executive director of Stop Animal Exploitation Now! said in a statement that research at the facility should be discounted because of the violations. "Negligence at Lovelace took the life of a female monkey. ... This facility should face serious consequences, but the USDA is allowing them to get away with murder," he said.

See Also:
5 Jan 2010 - Lovelace lab charged with 9 federal violations in 1 year; Monkey dies with head trapped in cage
Lovelace Respiratory Research Institute

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