Young beagle looking up at someone.
Marcus Wallis

July 01, 2020Dogs not necessary except in very limited areas of research, report says

National advisory panel concludes that most recent research involving dogs conducted by the Department of Veterans Affairs was unnecessary and that the agency should do more to justify limited use of canines and improve the lives of those still used.

A National Academy of Sciences Committee report released today told the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs that dogs are not necessary except in very limited areas of research. After an 18-month study of the VA’s dog research the committee found that not only was it unnecessary in most cases to use dogs in biomedical research, but that the agency lacked any proof of making serious attempts to explore alternatives. Harvard’s Animal Law & Policy Executive Director Chris Green, who served on the committee, hopes the reports findings will significantly reduce the numbers of dogs (and other animals) used in research. In an exclusive story in The Washington Post he said: “If it is absolutely vital that dogs are the only option to conduct an experiment that VA determines to be a valid, necessary biomedical experiment, then you make sure the dogs are treated as well as you possibly can.”

You can read the full report here.