Germany: Lufthansa Decide to Stop Flying Animals to Laboratories.

Great news: Less than one day after PETA posted photos of 50 forlorn beagles who were transported by Lufthansa airlines to a Charles River Laboratory (CRL) in Scotland, Lufthansa announced that it would no longer transport dogs and cats to laboratories!

Dogs and cats are used in a variety of laboratory experiments. They’ve been forced to inhale and/or ingest toxic substances, addicted to drugs and alcohol, purposely deafened, blinded, burned, infected with diseases, or used to test various products. Thousands of dogs are poisoned every year to test drugs, vaccines, and medical devices. Beagles are often used because of their size and gentle nature.

The experiments are legal when “properly conducted” in a laboratory setting. Experimenters—and animal suppliers—who violate the minimal standards set forth by the Animal Welfare Act (AWA), often get little more than a slap on the wrist—if that. Since 2007, Marshall Farms, the breeding facility where the dogs in the photos originated, has been cited for more than 20 violations of the AWA. CRL, which is one of the world’s largest breeders and users of animals for experiments, has violated federal laws more than two dozen times since 2007.  (It was recently fined $14,000 by the USDA for negligence in the deaths of 33 monkeys in its Nevada facilities.)

Every year, millions and millions of animals—dogs, cats, primates, rats, mice, rabbits, sheep, and just about every other species you can imagine—are tortured and killed in laboratories across the globe. So Lufthansa’s decision to stop transporting dogs and cats to laboratories, while a small victory, is significant. One more company has washed the blood from its hands by refusing to ship animals to their death. Air Canada stopped shipping dogs to laboratories in 2007, and major airline carriers, Cathay Pacific and Qantas, refuse to transport any animals to laboratories. Just a couple of weeks ago, the state of Utah stopped requiring animal shelters to hand over dogs and cats to universities and other institutions for use in laboratory experiments. Every victory helps, even the small ones.

And Lufthansa’s quick decision to stop shipping dogs and cats to labs shows that public outcry truly makes a difference. Not even one day passed between when PETA posted the photos—and an action alert encouraging people to contact the company to complain—and Lufthansa changed its policy. Few companies want to tangle with PETA, or all the caring people who make the victories possible.

We still have a long way to go (PETA is now trying to persuade Lufthansa to extend its policy to other sentient animals), but, we are making headway—slowly, but surely. Please see to find out how you can help put a stop to animal tests.


SAV Comment –

Brilliant decision Lufthansa – Congratulations !