The Fine Line between Progress and Crime: When is Animal Experimentation Ethical

Hey there, welcome back to my blog! I had such a good response to the previous post so I really wanted to express how thankful I am for you special people who take the time to send me emails. I truly appreciate how I received some suggestions for articles and I even got some questions, too! There was one particular question that really stuck out.

It was question posed by Sarah of Wisconsin, USA. She asked: “When is animal experimentation ethical?”

The concept of experimenting on animals has always been a rather touchy subject. Whenever this topic comes up, it is always either of two things: the people who outright denounce any form of animal experimentation and those who think that it is necessary. When it comes to it, the concept of ‘ethical’ experimentation seems to be a contradiction in itself.

Unethical versus Ethical

Just what is that is considered to be unethical? Mostly, it comes down to several things like:

  • Degree of Experimentation
  • Utilization of the Results
  • Handling of Animals

I wholly agree that certain experimentation is critical for progress. This is how we find out what is safe for human consumption or even pharmaceutical discoveries. Animals like the humble mouse are favored subjects for cancer research. When it comes down to it, unethical animal testing is often the result of frivolous pursuits.

One field or industry that is often associated with unethical experimentation on animals is the cosmetic industry. There used to be big name brands that used to test their products on animals like chimps and dogs. Not only is it cruel but it doesn’t make much sense. Animals do not have the same reactions regarding cosmetic things like lipstick and other makeup. So testing them for hypoallergenic purposes does not yield anything important.

Ethical treatment of animals during experiments is often considered to be doubtful but they do occur. It is when facilities take proper care of animals by giving them enough space to move, proper meals that give them ample nutrition, and not subjecting them to experiments that causes them to experience significant pain or discomfort.

The topic of ethical experimentation is still a tad sketchy, in my honest opinion. After all, you can’t be ethical but at the same time subject something to experiments that do not have a wholly secure outcome.

To Close

While there will always be a sort of discord regarding the topic of animal experimentation and ethics, I believe that what we should be looking at is the bigger picture. The reason why certain experimentation procedures—in the field of medicine particularly—are needed is because our laws prevent us from doing human experimentation. That, I think, is just right. That last thing that we need would be people of science using people to further their research.

Brave animals that are included in scientific research are given the burden that we cannot carry. It is through their sacrifice that we are able to unlock knowledge that provides us with better chances of living at a better quality than those before us. Do you agree?

Infographic by: