Category: Medical Research – animal free

Week 52 Animals Australia

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One thing that sucks more than goodbyes is long goodbyes.  So I have begun this at 2.24 pm and have allowed myself exactly one hour to publish it so none of the quality control (ok I probably made some mistakes, I did my best)  and researched facts of yore, just anecdotes, and rambling for the next 58 minutes.

So how did the 52 weeks work out?…Really well, thank you for asking.

I had no sick days from work and I trimmed off a small amount of excess fat and have felt good energy levels and much happier in my heart and mind all round.  It feels good to have made and actually 99% stuck to my first* NY resolution. I thank my ex, who said I never finish anything for providing extra motivation 🙂

(*and probably last- don’t wanna spoil my 99% success rate…!! Why 99%?  Because most of  my wine wasn’t vegan…I’ve been drinking lovely stuff in a fancy 4 litre box, if you would like to know more about vegan alcohol, Barnivore is a great site. Yalumba wines are vegan, kudos to them. Yalumba viognier is lovely which I buy for a ‘lash out’.  Also I have had to wear leather shoes for work and leather gloves for bushland maintenance work.  I think a lot about the animal who was unwillingly involved in their manufacture. Why I am putting this here is to show that perfection is hard to achieve as an imperfect being in an imperfect world, imperfection is not an excuse to give up trying to do the best you can wherever you can.  Oh and also I got Indian takeaway and despite my repeated request for no dairy, the food turned out to be loaded with ghee (clarified butter) rather than waste it, I ate it.  But it is good to be able to share this experience here as a trap for young players…Indian food is great for vegetarians, vegans really need to be diligent.)

Regarding the charities, wow! There are some amazing organisations out there.  Most of the ones I listed are easy to donate to, except for Haytap (Turkey) who had their Paypal cancelled by the government and they were unable to accept my credit card. So the $52 from that week sadly never made it, but all the rest are sorted.  I connected with a few lovely people around the world throught this and if you are travelling overseas, I would definitely recommend researching legitimate charities where you are headed to see if you can help out and who you can meet and share knowledge and passion for compassion with :-).  I almost wish there were more weeks in the year as there are so many other worthy ones, it is amazing what you find when you look.

One I always planned to cover was Soi Dog in Thailand, but it got bumped a couple of times and now it’s week 52 already.  I might give them the Haytap donation.  Suffering is suffering and it is great to alleviate it for any individual.  But one thing that was admirable  about most of the charities I chose to support was how they work to invoke systemic change…changing the way individuals and society treat animals and working towards cutting out the root of much animal suffering.

I will definitely stick with the plant powered lifestyle and continue to advocate for animals…

Oh and I have a little surprise… while this is the end of this particular chapter, its not a complete “So long and thanks for not eating fish” from me…

….Now I have graduated from 52 Charities High School, I am going to work on another project that will bring together all the links and knowledge and news I can find about a animals, the environment, food, events etc. Hang on in there and in a couple of months I will create a post to guide you to the cornucopia of wonderfulness I have planned.

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http://www.animalsaustralia.org/

This is one of my favourite charities that I have supported for many years. It is definitely worth visiting their page and learning about their work.

Animals Australia’s major campaigns are strategically targeting the areas where animals are in greatest need — whether due to extreme cruelty, or due to the vast number of individual animals who are suffering.

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Our work is focused around two strategic areas: investigations to expose animal abuse wherever it occurs, and public awareness initiatives to empower and inspire the community to adopt cruelty-free lifestyle choices.

You can order a free vegetarian starter kit here.

And watch a wonderful video by Lyn White here.

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To the friends I know and to the friends I haven’t met yet who read this, I really thank you!! It was pretty nerve wracking putting it out there, self doubt and all that.

I hope in some way I have contributed something beneficial xxx

1 hour 3 mins. Not bad!

Week 41 World Animal Day (International)

Today is the 4th of October which means it’s…..

 World Animal Day!

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THE GOAL OF WORLD ANIMAL DAY IS TO RAISE THE STATUS OF ANIMALS IN ORDER TO IMPROVE WELFARE STANDARDS AROUND THE GLOBE

To achieve this, we encourage animal welfare organisations, community groups, youth and children’s clubs, businesses and individuals to organise events in celebration of World Animal Day. Involvement is growing at an astonishing rate and it’s now widely accepted and celebrated in a variety of different ways in many countries, with no regard to nationality, religion, faith or political ideology.

Events are organised under the World Animal Day Umbrella by being publicised on this website and advertised using the World Animal Day brand and logo. Global branding effectively ties all events together and, over the years we have found this approach to be particularly helpful to grass roots groups who struggle to attract media attention in order to raise awareness of their work and fundraise. This draws attention to animal issues and makes them front page news – a vital catalyst for change.

We currently have a team of 93 Ambassadors representing 75 countries around the globe.  (This is a great way to find out about people and organisations around the world- from Andorra to Zimbabwe- that genuinely care for animals).

Cyprus

CYPRUS – STELLA STYLIANOU
Animal Rescue & Protection Association (ARGOS)

Stella says: Animal awareness in Cyprus was non-existent before the World Animal Day events began. With each year that World Animal Day is celebrated, awareness grows and attitudes are slowly changing as people begin to see animals in a different light. 

One of the most significant statements that will forever remain imprinted in my mind was when a local village farmer visited me at the shelter following one of our World Animal Day events. A German Shepherd dog had wandered onto his farm and he brought him to our shelter.  He said that in years past, he would have shot any stray dog on his farm, dig a hole and bury it and that would be that but, he continued, “you are doing something truly wonderful and now I cannot bring myself to do such a thing.

The Democratic Republic of the Congo

DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC OF CONGO – PAUL LUGHEMBE
Safe Environment for All (SEA)

Paul says: Our World Animal Day Campaign has increasingly reduced the abuse of animals during transportation, the killing of dogs and the mass killing of cats in the city of Goma and surrounding areas. World Animal Day is slowly swaying the attitudes of people towards respecting the rights of all animals wherever and in whatever circumstances. 

Nepal

NEPAL – KHAGESHWAAR SHARMA
Himalayan Animal Rescue Trust

Khageshwaar says: I’m delighted to tell you that World Animal Day is now being celebrated by government institutions in Nepal, such as the District Livestock Services Office, with whom we liaise to commemorate the day. 

World Animal Day events encourage people to work together to sensitise communities, making them aware of the needs of animals they live among, and also of how they can improve their lives. Creating an outlook that respects all animals is a slow process and World Animal Day acts as an annual marker to measure progress.

Australia

AUSTRALIA – PAM AHERN
Edgar’s Mission Farm Sanctuary

Pam says: For as long as I can remember animals have shared my world and, indeed, throughout human history animals have been trotting along beside us; offering comfort, helping forge nations and a never ending source of wonder. I just love World Animal Day and the fact it is celebrated around the globe.  The day gives animal lovers an opportunity to unite, celebrate and empower much needed change for our animal friends.

To coincide with World Animal Day, the good people of Edgar’s Mission have devised

Be Kind to Animals Week.

They in turn have found a wonderful ‘lambassador’ for 2016 in Tamara Kenneally who is an animal photographer and founder of Lefty’s Place animal refuge in Benalla, Victoria.

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I will finish with a letter I found on another Wordpress blog that seems a fitting treasure to have found on World Animal Day.

Letter to a new vegan

This was my submission for Letters to a New Vegan, a book that is being compiled by longterm vegans to welcome and support those who are just starting out. 


Dear new vegan,

Welcome. Speaking not only for myself but, boldly, for the billions of sentient beings who currently suffer at human hands, and for the straining, groaning planet, and for the people who go hungry and thirsty because we don’t know how to share: thank you for opening your eyes and acting on what you see.

I hope you will find your vegan journey to be endlessly inspiring, fulfilling and rewarding as do I and so many others I know who have chosen this path too. My motto is ‘the best things in life are cruelty-free’ and I believe this is self-evident the moment we embark on living in tune with our deepest values. There are no barriers once we have made up our minds and our hearts. Being vegan opens up possibilities while denying us nothing.

Any time you feel disconnected from people around you who still buy in to the relentless tide of mainstream thinking, remember your deep connection to those whom you have spared. Let yourself feel the lightness with which you tread and be lifted up by it. No injustice can end while we as individuals take part in it. You, for your part, are free of that now.

Of course, it is not a vegan world, and while this remains the case there is much to be done. There are countless ways to help spread the vegan consciousness, and we can fit what we do to our talents, our passions, and the time available to us. A great way to start is simply by speaking your truth. I was quiet about my veganism for the first few years, having been schooled in the art of keeping a low profile as a vegetarian growing up. I was the only one in my family and the only one of my friends bar one. I learnt to say “it’s a personal choice thing” and “I couldn’t hurt a fly”, which let people off the hook: they could attribute my choice to my sentimentality or unusual sensitivity, without looking at themselves. But about a year in to being vegan, a feeling of courage and confidence began to blossom inside me as I realised that my previous ‘live and let live’ philosophy was leaving the victims out of the equation… It wasn’t hard once this realisation dawned. I began to feel that being vegan wasn’t even about me any more. So I began to speak up, looking for bridges to build and sparks of consciousness to ignite, entirely bypassing my natural reticence and finding my true voice – for the voiceless. I hope it will be the same for you, and you find your voice at your own pace and in your own way too.

Becoming vegan sadly involves becoming aware of some heart-breaking truths, and this can be very painful to carry with us. But amidst it all – all the despair, the disbelief, the anger – we have every reason to be joyful, because we are making a difference every day. We are taking a stand for freedom and that means something for every being who is not forcibly brought into this world to be exploited and violently destroyed as a product for us to use.

The world we dream of is a paradise indeed. Space for all species to coexist, free from anthropocentric domination, suffused by a compassionate human consciousness, free from the pathological ideology of ‘carnism’ which entails an arbitrary disregard for the most basic interests of certain species even while preaching values such as kindness and non-violence in other walks of life.

You are part of this future, which need not be a far-off fantasy: all it needs is enough people to make the connection as you have. The world is vegan if we want it!

Ahimsa,

Catherine

 

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ahimsa: a Buddhist and Hindu and especially Jainist doctrine holding that all forms of life are sacred and urging the avoidance of violenceahimsa

Week 25 Humane Research Australia (Australia)

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Some very good news recently – Australia is starting to catch up with NZ, bro!!

I am not sure why it isn’t being more widely celebrated, if my parents in law hadn’t given me a back copy of the Herald Sun (June 2 2016), I might have missed this altogether.

Cosmetics cruelty will be banned in Australia by July next year, the Federal Government pledged today, following a two year campaign by #BeCrueltyFree, led by Humane Research Australia and Humane Society International (Global).

Cosmetics tested on animals to be banned in Australia

THOUSANDS of cosmetics, including perfume, toothpaste and makeup, will be banned from stores after the Federal Government pledged to outlaw the sale of all products tested on animals.

From July next year any products that have been tested on animals, or which contain ingredients that have been tested on animals, will be prohibited.

This reform will bring Australia’s laws into line with laws in the European Union and in New Zealand.

But existing products won’t be pulled from shelves. The strict laws will apply only to new products.

The law will still allow “responsible animal testing” for medical tests and for drug development.

The Coalition hopes the move will see all products tested on animals, phased out of the local marketplace.

The RSPCA says major beauty brands including Estée Lauder, Johnson & Johnson, Revlon and Colgate are all involved in animal testing, with more than 27,000 animals — mainly rodents, rabbits and guinea pigs — still subjected to cosmetics testing.

The animal welfare group has long pushed for the change and says there are more than 20,000 safe chemical ingredients already available to manufacturers.

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The RSPCA didn’t mention L’Oreal who are one of the worst offenders…and who own the Body Shop.  Please don’t support them.

Animal testing is not just putting ‘lipstick on a pig’…

Toxicity—LD50 test:

The traditional LD50 (lethal dose 50 percent) test forced animals, often rats and mice, to ingest chemicals to determine the dose that resulted in the death of 50 percent of the animals. The animals were, for example, force-fed by a tube inserted down the esophagus into the stomach, causing severe discomfort and extreme and unrelenting pain.

Eye irritancy—Draize test:

The Draize test measures the eye irritancy of chemicals and other products by dropping concentrated amounts of a test substance into an animal’s eye (often albino rabbits, who are docile and inexpensive) and then assessing the eye’s reactions using a subjective numeral score to indicate the level of eye damage and injury. In most instances, the conscious animals are immobilized in full body restraint stocks and remain unanaesthetized for up to 14 days for evaluation.

Skin irritation, corrosion, sensitization, and absorption tests:

Tests for skin irritation (level of damage caused to the skin by a substance) and corrosivity (potential of a substance to cause irreversible damage to the skin) are typically conducted on shaved rabbits using the classic Draize skin test, the lesser-known cousin of its ocular counterpart.

And these are just some of the delights animals are subjected to in the name of ‘research’…  For a fuller list see New England Anti Vivisection Society.

China is a major cause of utterly unnecessary animal suffering.  It not only doesn’t ban, but actually requires by law the animal testing of cosmetic products that have been been deemed safe for years, even in slightly more *ahem* ‘stringent’ countries.

Do they seriously think it is still 1950 over there?

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If a brand sells its product in China, it can’t claim cruelty free status.

At present, it is a legal requirement in China for imported cosmetics to be tested on animals – mostly mice or rats, but also rabbits and guinea pigs. Britain banned the practice in 1998, while the European Union did so in 2013. Artificial skin cells are now used for safety tests.

Of course medical research globally continues unabated, and relatively unreformed.

In some ways I guess, is still 1950 in many laboratories…

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…but thankfully not in all….

Here is a list of Australian medical charities that don’t test on animals.

I propose an easy way to distinguish progressive, cruelty free laboratories from the cruel, animal testing kind.  The latter can have their names permanently changed to lavatories instead, for the shits you will find inside them.

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Humane Research Australia

http://www.humaneresearch.org.au/

If a picture tells a thousand words, then each of these pictures also represent thousands of lives.

Humane Research Australia speaks out against animal experimentation at every opportunity. These are some of the issues they have focused on:

 

Ban Primate Experiments Campaign WebsiteThrough the Looking GlassChoosing Cruelty FreeHappy EndingsVoices from the LabsXenotransplantation: Trading in spare partsStopping the use of Pound Animals in Research Ban the importation of primates for researchUse of Fetal Calf SerumSay NO to disection

I wonder… if animals could cry in pain and fear just as humans do, would we treat them so ruthlessly?

 

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And of course there is some bad news..the good news I guess is that it even made the news…

Vietnamese feedlot and abattoirs suspended from receiving Australian cattle following animal cruelty allegations

Lets just ban this truly bloody obscenity. NZ  has stopped live export for slaughter since 2007.

Keep up with your cousins, Australia-they’re way ahead. They’ve even got a laser kiwi flag.

 

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Week 4 Dr Hadwen Trust -Promoting Animal Free Medical Research (UK)

 

A horrifying 4,107 research procedures took place on dogs in 2014. Yes, this is still how we treat our best friends when they are out of sight and out of mind.

DHT are currently running a fundraising campaign entitled ‘Pound for a Hound’ to raise money to save dogs from medical experiments and remind people about these voiceless victims.

 

Test beagles are confined to individual cages, often in buildings with no natural light, so typically they live their entire lives without ever seeing the sun or sky or touching the earth with their paws. Sometimes they’re “debarked,” meaning they have their vocal cords severed so the technicians don’t have to hear them cry. They’re fed “food” that’s specially designed to minimize waste, which means that it has no flavor, so along with playing outside and interacting with people and other dogs, eating is another basic pleasure they’re deprived of for life.
In short, test beagles are born into an existence designed to be completely devoid of joy and assured of regular doses of pain and poison. 
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/leighton-woodhouse/beagles-testing_b_1186404.html

 

And of course it’s not only dogs, it’s all kinds of intelligent, feeling animals that suffer in the name of ‘research’ at the hands of what often demonstrates itself to be a far less intelligent, less feeling beast.

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Dr Hadwen Trust - Humanity in Research

The Dr Hadwen Trust (DHT) is the UK’s leading non-animal medical research charity, which promotes humanity…while at the same time also benefitting humanity. Win-Win!

To steal from brazenly from their ‘About Us’ page…

We fund and promote the development of techniques and procedures to replace the use of animals in biomedical research.

To  achieve our aim, the DHT supports and assists scientists to implement existing techniques and develop new ones which are more human-relevant and will replace animal experiments. We award grants to scientists in universities, hospitals and research organisations following a rigorous and independent peer-reviewed selection procedure. Only those projects with the highest scientific calibre and the best potential for the replacement of animals will be awarded funding.

Funded solely by charitable donations, the DHT has awarded grants to over 170 research projects since 1971 in diverse areas of medical research including cancer, Alzheimer’s disease, asthma, diabetes, kidney, heart and liver disease, to name only a few.

DHT Website

They also have a charity shop which is only stocks vegan (non animal derived) products.  Ethical bargains for a great cause…this is my idea of heaven!

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(ps I hope you didn’t just turn up your nose at rats? Look at these clever little cuties!)

Heartwarming rat video