Animal Studies Bibliography

Coile, D. Caroline and Neal E. Miller. 1984. How radical animal activists try to mislead humane people. American Psychologist 39(6): 700-701.

In order to assess claims made by Mobilization for Animals literature, Coile and Miller surveyed all articles (n=608) reporting animal research in APA journals from 1979 to 1983. They found that 0% of the articles involved any of the 6 specific accusations in the exact form stated, and conclude that these practices are not characteristic of experimental psychology. They note that such practices might have occurred but were unreported or unpublished/published elsewhere, and argue that the former is unlikely and the latter would involve only a small number of cases. Pain research is vital to relieving human and animal suffering and therefore justifies the use of some animals in painful experiments. The pain animals undergo, from shocks and food or water deprivation, is far less than alleged by the activists, and in fact most of the studies did not involve any pain whatsoever. Much of the treatment, such as castration (neutering) or feeding once a day, is recommended by veterinarians as the healthiest treatment for pets. Animals involved in these experiments may be better off than they would be in the wild, where they would live shorter and less comfortable and less social lives. Further, the research was not carried out to fulfill idle curiosity, as the activists allege. Rather, most of the research, basic or applied, was funded by grants from respected institutions like the NIH which require solid scientific reasoning and quality to fund research. Animal research has produced medical treatments that have helped millions of people and animals live better. Animal rights activists should stop spreading misleading claims and should instead focus on real animal abuse, such as pet abandonment.



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