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Uncaged 1993-2012: This is the archived website of Uncaged. All information correct at the time of archiving - November 2012.

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Cats are subjected to horrific experiments involving interference with the brain
Cats are subjected to horrific experiments involving interference with the brain.

1.5 million people demand Government road map to end animal experiments

Largest ever animal protection petition to be submitted to 10 Downing Street

On Thursday 2 July, at 12.30pm, Uncaged will submit a 1.5 million strong petition to 10 Downing Street, calling on the UK Government to develop a ‘road map’ for the end of animal experimentation. Uncaged will be accompanied by Parliamentarians from all the main parties.

The signatures - understood to comprise the largest animal welfare petition in British history - is the culmination of 15 years of epic effort in hundreds of towns and cities across the UK. We are submitting this petition now because we are at a critical point in this historic controversy - the UK Government is currently asking for the public’s views on animal research ahead of discussions with other Governments over a new European Union law.

The petition cites moral and scientific reasons to prohibit animal experiments. Even animal researchers themselves admit that laboratory experiments inevitably cause pain, suffering and distress to animals, which can often be severe. There is also growing confirmation that the results of animal experiments are an unreliable - and sometimes dangerous - guide to human biology, while non-animal methods offer greater accuracy and safety assurance.

But the Government has repeatedly ignored advice from ethical experts who have recommended that targets should be set towards ending animal tests.

Instead the number of animal experiments in Britain has been increasing since 2001. Dr Dan Lyons, Uncaged Campaigns Director and one of the UK’s leading experts in animal research policy, accuses the Government pursuing an extreme policy that shows total indifference to animal cruelty:

“The Government and the research industry pay lip service to ‘animal welfare’ and the need for alternatives to animal tests, but their actions betray a callous indifference to the suffering of innocent, defenceless animals. The dominant view among animal researchers is that it’s their god-given right to sacrifice animals in the pursuit of knowledge, no matter how cruelly-obtained or useless that knowledge is.

"However, the Government has always caved into that fundamentalist view, while feigning concern about animal welfare to dampen public outrage. The public’s sense that the Government exists in a moral vacuum is correct.

"Unfortunately, animal experimentation is so globally entrenched that it isn’t going to stop tomorrow. But the Government has a moral and democratic duty to work with other countries to start implementing a pro-active, rational policy that reflects the public’s desire for an end to this cruel practice. This enormous petition shows that washing their hands of the problem is no longer a viable option for the Government.”

These are some of the specific measures that Uncaged is asking the Government to support as part of the new European law on animal experiments:

  • explicit and active support for the over-arching goal of eliminating animal experiments
  • a targeted strategy to replace animal experiments with more advanced non-animal methods
  • ethical limits on animal experimentation that reflects the public’s ethical stance, starting with a prohibition on severe pain in experiments, rapid phase-out of the use of primates, restrictions on the infliction of pain in ‘blue skies’ research
  • thorough retrospective review to identify priority areas of animal research to be replaced with non-animal methods
  • genuine public accountability, independence and transparency in animal experimentation and its regulation

What you can do:

Lobby Home Office urgently

The Government’s public consultation period ends on Friday 3rd July. They have made the consultation process very difficult for the public to participate in due to its complexity. However, you can click here for a sample letter - please personalise if possible - to send to:



Animals Scientific Procedures Division
Home Office
4th Floor SW,
Seacole Building
2 Marsham Street


Attend our photocall accompanying petition submission, from 11.30am to 1pm on Thursday 2nd July, Whitehall, by entrance to Downing St. We have costumes, banners and placards to wear/hold! Please contact us to let us know if you are coming.

Uncaged Campaigns 26.06.09


Uncaged 1993-2012: This is the archived website of Uncaged. All information correct at the time of archiving - November 2012.