WCW Ended Painful Govt Cat Tests. Biden’s VA Secretary Wants More.


  • Veterans Affairs Secretary Denis McDonough—a White House Cabinet official—personally approved a new round of painful tests on 7 cats at the VA’s Stokes lab in Cleveland.
  • But the kittens haven’t been purchased. His experiments haven’t started yet.
  • Currently, no lab at the VA or other federal agency is abusing cats in painful experiments. WCW shut them all down.
  • McDonough’s plan would restart the U.S. government’s only painful cat test.
  • WCW’s new campaign aims to stop McDonough, save the “Stokes 7,” and eradicate painful cat testing inside the U.S. government. 

White Coat Waste is a Project to get the U.S. government out of the cat experimentation business. We’ve done more than anyone to expose and close painful federal cat labs. In fact, we’ve shut them all down

But one Biden Administration bureaucrat wants to restart this kitten cat-astrophe.

In recent years, we’ve shuttered the government’s largest cat lab, the USDA’s Kitten Slaughterhouse, and saved the survivors. The only other federal agency that was using our tax dollars to torture cats in painful experiments was the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). We’ve stopped them too.

End Painful Cat Tests

Federal reports analyzed by WCW show that, following our campaign, not a single cat was experimented on by the VA in 2022.

We’ve helped enact historic, first-of-its-kind legislation defunding the VA’s experiments on cats (and dogs and primates) and directing the agency to phase them out by 2025 (a measure Congress re-upped last month).

This is actual footage of Copper before he was killed at the Cleveland VA. Our campaign will make sure this wasteful government spending never happens again.

Records obtained by WCW describe Copper as a “friendly” and “playful” kitten. The VA implanted electrodes into Copper’s bladder and forced him to pee blood with a remote control. Copper was abused for 14 months and slaughtered at this taxpayer-funded lab.

As a result of our lobbying and grassroots pressure, VA labs in Los Angeles, Louisville, and Cleveland have ended all their cat experiments (like drilling to their skulls, crippling them, and forcing them to run on treadmills).  Our successful work to create a VA lab animal adoption policy also led to the retirement of some of the survivors, like the Stokes Sisters.

Currently, thanks to our campaign, no lab at the VA or any other federal agency is abusing cats in painful experiments.

WCW obtained this footage filmed shortly before Odie was killed on May 7, 2019. The VA purchased 6-month-old kittens and severed their spines. Some cats had artificial stool made from bran and potato flour rammed into their anus. Others suffered seizures and depression. We’re fighting to ensure the VA doesn’t start cat testing again.

But, if VA Secretary Denis McDonough gets his way, the VA will resume its catastrophic waste.

WCW’s investigation uncovered this image from the VA’s proposal to conduct a new painful & wasteful taxpayer-funded experiment on cats.

WCW’s investigation uncovered this image from the VA’s proposal to conduct a new painful & wasteful taxpayer-funded experiment on cats.

Our ongoing VA investigation has obtained a June 2022 letter from Secretary McDonough to Congress stating that the notorious Cleveland VA wants to conduct a new invasive experiment on cats just to test the durability of wiring connectors for a medical device.

WCW has obtained this letter from VA Secretary Denis McDonough to Congress announcing his personal approval for a new taxpayer-funded experiment on cats.

Sec. McDonough claimed in his letter last year to Sen. Martin Heinrich (D-NM) that this cat experiment is mandated by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and federal law. But the FDA has never required cat testing, and last year we successfully worked with Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) and other members of Congress to overturn the outdated FDA animal testing red tape mandate cited by the VA.

The entire basis for the VA and Sec. McDonough’s request for this cat experiment is now dubious, yet the project is still being planned.

These wasteful and unnecessary cat experiments—in which cats would have wiring implanted into their legs and backs and be strapped into vests like the cats in the video above at the Cleveland VA—would be funded by taxpayers through a VA grant that raked in $426,785 just last year and was just renewed until April 2024.

Government spending databases show taxpayer funding for the VA project that includes the proposed cat experiments was just renewed until 2024.

The VA even ghoulishly writes in its proposal that it specifically chose cats for this painful experiment because of how playful they are!

Fortunately, we’ve confirmed that the VA has not purchased these cats or started this cruel and unnecessary experiment yet, so we still have a chance to stop it and save cats and tax dollars from government abuse.

The VA claims it will retire any cats who survive the 6-month experiment, but it admits that some of the cats may be killed.

WCW’s review of the VA’s proposal to conduct its new taxpayer-funded cat experiment uncovered proof that some of the cats may be killed instead of adopted out (as the VA has claimed).

Records obtained by WCW via the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) show that cats abused in past device tests at the Cleveland VA have become sick, paralyzed, and were killed. And we’ve busted the Cleveland VA in the past for lying about adopting out “friendly” dogs that it really killed.

VA records obtained by WCW through FOIA show that cats abused in past medical device experiments at the Cleveland VA have suffered severe complications and had to be killed.

We’ve been rallying our millions of grassroots supporters to pressure the VA and have enlisted waste warriors Rep. Dina Titus (D-NV) and Army veteran Rep. Brian Mast (R-FL) to take the VA to task and hold it accountable.

In an April 2023 letter to Sec. McDonough citing WCW’s FOIA investigation of VA’s cat labs, Reps. Mast and Titus wrote that his “decision appears to be at odds with Congressional intent, federal law, and the VA’s own animal research policy and agency efforts to eliminate the use of cats.”

Despite writing to McDonough in April with their concerns about the questionable legality and necessity of the proposed cat experiments, Reps. Mast and Titus have yet to receive a response.

The stakes for “Stokes 7” couldn’t be higher. If we win, we won’t just save seven cats. 

We’ll also close the VA’s entire kitten testing program…and send ALL of Uncle Sam’s painful cat experiments to the litter box of history!

Blog Comments

This is unreal and needs to be stopped !! How could anyone in their right mind allow something like this! Most of these brain dead politicians should be shot!!! Stop this cruelty now!!!!!

It would be an understatement to say that this is cruel and stupid, not to mention a waste. The only thing animal experiments have proven is that they can KILL and HARM humans. The human experience cannot be duplicated in cats, cats don’t experience the same kind of stress that humans do that lead up to strokes, they don’t have the same response to stress that humans do, they don’t metabolize medicine as slowly as humans do, the biological, anatomical, social, histological differences between the species are ENORMOUS and can ONLY LEAD TO MORE HARM TO HUMANS! Why is it taking the VA so long to figure out that the real cures are coming from state of the art human simulators?!?

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