- Melbourne University
MELBOURNE University is using healthy dogs - some of them pregnant - for student vet operations, then killing the animals.
The dogs are anaesthetised before students carry out surgical procedures, then put down before they are likely to regain consciousness.
A student who did not want to be named said she had been given a bitch carrying seven unborn pups for surgery practice.
She said other students had been given two-month-old pups.
The university and its practices on dogs were dubbed "inhumane" by RSPCA Australia president Hugh Wirth .
Dr Wirth yesterday urged an end to the practice at the Faculty of Veterinary Science on the Werribee campus.
Every year, dozens of dogs are taken out of the faculty's special "dog colony" - a row of cages - for student operations.
Former student Lisa Elsner said:
"Most dogs were absolutely petrified - so scared that the students couldn't walk them on a lead through the door of the hospital.
"Some would lie close to the ground shaking all over, so in the end many had to be carried in."
Dr Elsner, now a qualified vet, said she refused to operate on animals that were to be put down. Several other students claimed laboratories were often under-supervised -- leaving baffled trainees to leaf through text books as they operated. Dean of Veterinary Science Prof Ken Hinchcliff confirmed the surgery practice, but said it was common.
"We use both dead and live animals in the instruction of veterinary students," he said.
"Use of live animals is a small but vital part of our surgery teaching program before clinical training.
"Dogs used in surgical teaching are anaesthetised before any surgical procedures are performed and are euthanised before awakening.
"All animals are treated with the utmost care and compassion. All procedures, sourcing, and housing of animals ultimately used for teaching is with the approval of the Animal Ethics Committee of the University of Melbourne."
Prof Hinchcliff refused to reveal where the dogs came from, saying only they were "donated".
An RSPCA spokesman said the society believed the university advertised for unwanted pets and former farm and breeding dogs.
Greyhound Victoria admitted it provided dogs to the university.
Dr Wirth said the use of the dogs was a waste of life.
"We don't support any operations on live dogs by students," he said.
"And we don't think that because a vet student has desexed one or two (dogs or cats) during their studies that it makes them a better vet."
Source: Eleni Hale From (Sunday Herald)
We need to stop dogs from being used in this way.
The Stop dogs being operated on then killed petition to Melbourne University was written by Dawn Stanford and is in the category Animal Welfare at GoPetition.