Animal Welfare Act Does Not Protect All Animals: An Activist Spotlight

In the Animal Welfare Act passed by Congress mice, rats and birds are excluded as animals to be protected. For many animal activists, the thought of animals being used for testing is unacceptable. As a result, people are taking action to ensure all animals have equal protection.

One Care2 petition author shared her reasons for advocacy:

What inspired you to take action?

I have read over the years about the deplorable situation for many animals in research labs. I took action at this particular time due to inspiration from my grandson’s guinea pig, S’mores. Whenever I visit my daughter’s home I give S’mores a lot of attention. She snuggles and even tries to “kiss” me. Whenever anyone opens the refrigerator door, she chirps for carrots. I realized from her actions just how much a rodent can bond and respond.

After reading about the Animal Welfare Act and based on S’mores, I decided to write the petition.

Why do you feel mice, rats and birds should be added to the Animal Welfare Act?

Mice, rats and birds do have personalities and do feel pain and do not deserve less in the way of protection than other animals. Just because they are small does not mean that they feel less.

I think it was Senator Jesse Helms who insisted on leaving out these creatures. Why, I do not know.

What are your worries regarding the current conditions of the Animal Welfare Act?

My main concern is that these animals are suffering. And often they are suffering for no legitimate reason. Many of the research procedures are unnecessary and serve no real purpose.

Some of the signers of the petition from United Kingdom say that all of this research using live animals does not occur in their country because there are other, more sophisticated ways of doing research experiments such as using computer models.

I also think that the poor animals are being used as cash cows. Many of the facilities are for profit (such as Covance) and do not want to give up the money. The researchers do not want to give up their jobs.

Do you have any other hopes for this petition?

I am hoping that my target, Senator Mark Warner will take some action in favor of adding mice, rats and birds to the Animal Welfare Act. Also, I want to increase peoples’ awareness of the plight of these animals and maybe some of these people will take actions of their own such as writing to their lawmakers.

Why should Care2 members sign your petition?

Care2 members are caring people. Signatures, especially along with comments, carry weight with targets. Animal welfare is an important aspect of our society and is becoming increasingly important in the world. People should sign so that each of us can make a difference for good in the world.

TAKE ACTION: If you agree, sign the petition asking Congress to protect mice, rats and birds.



Jenna T.
Jenna T.5 years ago

I don't believe in regulating slavery-it should be abolished. The best way to achieve that is to stop participating in industries of animal exploitation (boycott!). This means going vegan-we don't need animal products of any kind :)

Sarah D.
Sarah D.6 years ago

Humans can consent to be tested on. Non-human animals can't.

Niharika M.
Niharika M.6 years ago

I support this cause. I feel "All" animals deserve to be protected.

monique l.
monique l.6 years ago

sorry but there is an other way now to test products! :
Working on proteins... a way of substitution.

monique l.
monique l.6 years ago

All animals must not be used for testing, even the smallest as birds or mice and so on...
to-day animal testing is of no use... there are substitution ways much efficient!

Tamila mendoza
Tamila mendoza6 years ago


Pinke A.
Pinke A.6 years ago

These days,there have to be other ways to test! No animal testing!

beverly g.
beverly gannon6 years ago

all animals shoud be left alone to live their life no testing, no shooting no vile and cruel treatment.

Carolyn O.
Carolyn Ormenaj6 years ago

I think all animals should be protected even small animals like mice and birds! If we don't help protect them who will!!!

Debbie Kendrick
Debbie K.6 years ago

with all the technology we have these days, it is just inhumane for any animal to be tested on. Even though these animals are small, they are a creation from God and all life should be respected and not sacrificed for no good cause. Petition gladly signed. Thanks Megan. :)