If you have been sickened about #BeagleGate and the cruel and wasteful experiments on dogs funded by Dr. Anthony Fauci’s agency, the National Institute for Allergy and Infectious Diseases, you are not alone. People across the political spectrum have been horrified to learn that their tax dollars are being used to subsidize animal cruelty.
Details of NIAID’s puppy tests uncovered by the White Coat Waste Project are disturbing. Fauci’s division spent $1.68 million in taxpayer funds on experiments involving 44 beagle puppies as young as 6 months old. The puppies were force-fed experimental drugs before being killed and dissected. NIAID has admitted that the puppies’ vocal cords were barbarically cut in order to prevent them from barking in the lab.
In other Fauci-funded experiments that have cost taxpayers over $5 million to date, puppies have been infested with hundreds of ticks by strapping capsules full of the insects to their bare skin to study an illness that’s already preventable and treatable. At the end of the tests, the beagles are killed, even though they’re healthy and could be adopted out.
In yet another project with a price tag of $6 million, puppies have been treated ostensibly as heartworm factories and killed so the worms can be harvested and used in other experiments.
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These experiments are real, and they are wasteful, cruel, and unnecessary. The National Institute of Health (NIH) openly admits that over 90% of drugs that pass animal tests subsequently fail in human trials, either due to toxicity or because they do not work. The NIH has also stated that “animal models often fail to provide good ways to mimic disease or predict how drugs will work in humans.”
Fauci’s dog experiments are opposed by a supermajority of taxpayers, too. An October 2021 national poll of 1,000 taxpayers by Lincoln Park Strategies found that 66% of respondents (62% of Republicans, 64% of independents, and 71% of Democrats) want to defund NIAID’s beagle experiments.
NIAID has shown no willingness to reduce their wasteful and cruel animal experiments on their own — they have actually increased it — so Congress must step in. This has been done before: Just a few years ago, after public outcry about dog experiments at the Department of Veterans Affairs reached a fever pitch, lawmakers directed the VA to phase out experiments on dogs, cats, and primates by 2025. Now we must do the same to Fauci.
To accomplish this, we are working together to pass new, bipartisan legislation to end NIAID’s painful dog experiments. The Preventing Animal Abuse and Waste Act enjoys diverse support, including members of the conservative Freedom Caucus and the socialist “Squad.” It will prohibit Fauci’s NIAID from conducting or funding any experiments that cause significant pain or distress to dogs, including “maximum pain” experiments for which pain relief is deliberately withheld.
To end NIAID’s beagle experiments, we must first end its wasteful spending. The bipartisan PAAW Act will save taxpayer dollars, produce better data for scientists, and save puppies’ lives. It’s a win-win-win.
Nancy Mace represents South Carolina’s 1st Congressional District in the U.S. House of Representatives. Justin Goodman is the Senior Vice President of White Coat Waste Project, a 3-million-member taxpayer watchdog group.