So the next big question is, isn’t animal testing essential? Doesn’t it cure disease and save human lives? Well the answer is no. Animal testing is unreliable, expensive, time consuming, and most of all it’s not necessary. Animals are not good models for humans. They are allergic to certain basic compounds that are fine for humans, like Paracetamol (“used to treat many conditions such as headache, muscle aches, arthritis, backache, toothaches, colds, fevers, and relieves pain in mild arthritis” (Paracetamol), and vice versa. Drugs that have passed animal trials have then gone on to kill humans. The alternatives are better. Human tissue tests, computer models, population studies, and many more provide cheaper, faster, and more reliable results. Replacements have even been developed to better replicate the reaction of the human eye than animal experiments, nut scientists still don’t use it, and governments still won’t accept it as proof despite scientists agreeing that it is a far better test.
There are two basic scientific arguments that anyone can use against animal experiments and against animal researchers. The first is that animals and people are biologically very different from each other, and to many scientists it is blatantly obvious. The second point is that animals at the beginning of the experiment are usually healthy and they are made ill. They are given a disease or they are injured by artificial means, and in that way nothing resembles the natural history, or the natural course of the disease in people, that researchers are trying to mimic in animals. Those two arguments are powerful: animals and people are biologically very different from each other, and the fact that the animals are healthy at the beginning of the experiment and are then made ill or injured by artificial means.
About 85% of animal experiments are conducted on rats and mice; and we are very different from rats and mice. So some scientists will say, well yes, but we have a better model than rats and mice, we have chimpanzees. Well we share about 98.4% of our DNA with chimpanzees, but that tiny difference in DNA between humans and chimps is huge in terms of biological effects. For example, chimpanzees are immune to at least three deadly human diseases including HIV/AIDS, Hepatitis B, and common malaria. Now those three diseases kill millions of people every year. The chimpanzee is immune to those diseases. “Drugs that were tested on lab animals had a severely different impact on humans. In a lot of cases the animals would have no link to certain drugs, diseases, and chemicals”(Vivisection Information Network).
Animal testing is “bad science”; we want “good science”. Good science consists of three things. First of all it should be species specific; you wouldn’t test a drug for parrots on racehorses. The second point is that it must do no harm. That means you cannot use healthy volunteers. Using healthy volunteers is putting healthy people at risk. The third point is...