Vivisection has been defined as “The act of cutting into or dissecting the body of a living animal, especially for scientific research.” (The word is derived from the Latin, vivus, for alive, and the English section, which means cut). The term has come to mean any harmful or invasive technique used on animals in experimentation or dissection.
Failure of the Animal Model
The use of animals as stand-ins for humans can give rise to misleading results because of the intrinsic differences between humans and other species. Human disease and human response to drugs and other chemicals should be studied in human-relevant systems.
Animals Used in Product Testing
Each year, millions of animals are used to measure the safety of household and personal care products. These toxicity tests were developed in the early 1900s and have been criticized for their extreme cruelty and inability to provide reliable data that can be extrapolated to humans.
Animals Used in Cosmetics Testing
People trust that the cosmetics and personal care products that they purchase are safe for all their family members, including their companion animals, but object to the use of animals in toxicity testing to assess the safety of these products and their ingredients. Polls have shown that most consumers would prefer to use products from companies that do not test on animals. And innovative alternative testing methods are now available that are more humane, faster, less expensive and better able to predict how these products will affect people. Despite this, the use of animals to test the safety of cosmetics continues in the U.S. and throughout the world.
Animals Used in Research
Despite the inherent limitations with the animal model and advances made in technology, it is estimated that over 100 million animals are used every year by the research industry, which includes universities, pharmaceutical and diagnostic laboratories, as well as military, agricultural and marine mammal facilities.