Last week, the Humane Society of the US released their investigation into the Charles River Lab in Mattawan, MI and what they found was disturbing, to say the least:

  • some dogs had their jaws surgically broken to test dental implants
  • others had drug pumps inserted beneath their skin
  • some had invasive surgeries to test an ALS drug
  • the current focus is on 36 beagles being force-fed toxic chemicals sometimes up to four times a day for almost a year

HSUS investigators were undercover at the lab for nearly 100 days in the spring and summer of 2018.


According to The Dow Chemical company, it is required to test pesticides and fungicides on dogs to make sure they aren’t too toxic. But Kathleen Conlee, Vice President Of Animal Research Issues at The Humane Society of the United States said,

“We need to get out of this cycle of using dogs just because we have always used them. I don’t think everyone in there is an uncaring person. I’ve been there myself but hopefully someday they will see the light and join us in trying to end abuse of animals like this.

These dogs were getting forced fed pesticides every day for a one-year long pesticide test that is widely considered unnecessary. These animals are still alive today but will be killed in July.”1

(I don’t know. I would think you’d have to be heartless to do this to an innocent animal.)

“Companies pay the lab to carry out their product testing on animals. That includes Midland-based Dow Chemical. The company contracted the lab to use 36 beagles for a year-long test on the toxicity of a new fungicide. The program started in summer 2018 and will be completed in July 2019.

U.S. law only requires a 90-day test to get new pesticides approved. However, Dow said that Brazil requires a year of testing– hence the long test underway in Michigan.”1

The HSUS says the long-term results don’t justify the cruelty. WE COULD NOT AGREE MORE.

The following is Dow Chemical’s full statement on the animals and testing process:

Dow has a strong commitment to ensuring the safety of our products, and the care and well-being of animals. Specifically, Corteva Agriscience™, the Agriculture Division of DowDuPont, which includes Dow’s former fungicide business, has been working closely with the Humane Society of the U.S. for many months to encourage Brazil’s Agência Nacional de Vigilância Sanitária (ANVISA) to amend its animal test requirements for pesticides. Once Corteva is given certainty that the study is no longer required, they will stop the study immediately.

Animal testing is not something Dow undertakes lightly, but neither is it something the Company can discontinue when it is required by regulatory authorities. Dow keeps its use of animal testing to an absolute minimum. Dow is committed to finding alternatives to animal testing and has established a Predictive Toxicology team dedicated to this goal. Dow scientists actively advocate for alternative methods by engaging global regulatory agencies and collaborates with governments, animal welfare organizations and researchers. All this is evidence of our commitment to the 3R’s – reducing, refining and replacing the use of animals in toxicology testing.1

But the issue runs much deeper, too as the FDA often requests that companies provide numerous animal tests on products, which sometimes includes dogs. This practice must end. Indeed, according to Kathleen Conlee “Over 90% of drugs that show promising results in animals, ultimately fail in humans. We want to see better tests that are relevant to humans.”1


  1. WILX, NBC 10