Lethal dose testing: this test has been performed since as far back as 1927! The substance to be tested is forcibly poured or even “pumped” into the animal’s throat and stomach. This often results in death as a result of injury to the throat or stomach with tubes pushed by animals to the stomach, or actually due to a lethal dose. Another variant is to inject them with deadly substances by injection under the skin, into a vein, etc. and then observe how and for how long the animal suffers before being rescued… Often, however, these substances are also applied to the animal’s eyes, anal or vaginal opening, or forced to inhale through an attached mask. The quantities they use are often so high that they have nothing to do with reality and therefore do not give any useful results. Animal reactions include convulsions, vomiting, diarrhea, paralysis, bleeding from the eyes, nose, mouth, and buttocks. However, these tests can last for 3 months and longer! However, in long-term testing, animals are poisoned in these ways on a daily basis, and such torture continues even after 2 years… Of course, no painkillers are used, as this could interfere with the results…
On top of all this, however, these tests are not reliable. Man is not an animal and his body reacts differently. Therefore, there have also been various scandals with some drugs, which, despite being tested on animals countless times, have had severe side effects and have left irreparable consequences in humans. The lethal dose in animals also depends on several factors: the type of animal, sex, age, diet, time of year and method of testing, and many others. Eg nicotine is lethal for humans at a dose of 0.9 mg / kg, and in rats as much as 53 mg / kg! Alternatives to these atrocities, of course, exist; computer simulation, cultivation of tissue from a few removed cells, which can then be tested…
Eye irritant testing: This method has been in use for over 4 decades. In these tests, 100 milliliters of the substance in the form of liquid, granules or powder are injected into the eyes of experimental animals, usually rabbits. They are immobilized so that they cannot escape or move, and many of them even break their necks during such attempts. They have their eyes forcibly opened with staples. When these harmful substances are applied to them, the animals roar in pain, and the “scientists” observe how and for how long their eyes fail. This “observation” lasts up to three weeks, and the declining eye condition is recorded at intervals. The rabbits are, of course, fully conscious and do not receive any painkillers, as this is supposed to “disrupt” the course and results of the tests. The consequences of this torture are severe swelling of the eyelids, inflammation of the iris, pus or ulceration of the eyes, bleeding and blindness. Also, the results of these tests are not reliable, as the human eye is completely different from the rabbit. Uncertainty was also confirmed by subsequent studies: they compared the reaction of the human eye to accidental contact with an irritant and the results of these tests. The differences between the reactions of humans and rabbits were as many as 250 times! After the tests are completed, these rabbits are killed and used for further tests.
In addition, these tests do NOT protect users, but manufacturers. The fact that the rabbit will go blind within 72 hours after the anti-dandruff shampoo was applied to his eyes does not help anyone. We all already know that such things are not noticeable, and in case the substance accidentally gets there, we immediately wash it with water and seek medical help. No one will just leave it in her eyes and suffer severe pain!
More and more companies are opting for a less harsh and more reliable method of testing irritants; with volunteers, cultured tissues, corneas from “eye banks”… These tests are of course also much more reliable.
Skin irritant testing: Bunnies, monkeys or guinea pigs are usually used for these experiments. The irritant is applied to shaved or often even intentionally damaged skin. The results are skin irritation and redness, skin irritation, rash and swelling. Test animals are immobilized in devices that prevent them from escaping, while “scientists” repeatedly apply substances that irritate and burn their skin. However, because their skin is different, these tests are not reliable, as their skin reacts only to a limited extent and no difference can be observed between mild and severe irritation. Which, of course, does not mean that they suffer less… In addition, there are differences between individual species: when testing anti-dandruff shampoo, rabbits reacted very strongly, while baboons are barely noticeable.
An alternative is testing on cultured skin, which would also give reliable results.
How much substance penetrates the skin: These tests are used to determine if a substance can penetrate so deep that it enters the bloodstream and thus the whole body. It is performed as described above, but the uncertainty is very high here, as the difference in absorption of the substance is as much as 5 times between individual species of animals and humans.
Allergy testing: the likelihood of developing an allergy is tested. There are as many as 15 species of these tests and each requires as many as 20 to 40 animals !!! The substance is applied several times in a row to bare or even damaged skin, usually in a few times too high doses to be able to get a realistic estimate at all. In addition, of course, there are big differences between the reactions of different species of animals and humans.
Phototoxicity and photosensitivity: this is a test of skin reactions to chemicals under the influence of UV rays and light. Guinea pigs, mice, rats and rabbits are the most common victims of these tests. The irritating substance is applied to shaved skin. The results are skin irritation and redness, skin irritation, rash and swelling. In addition to the fact that the reaction on the skin of each animal and human is different, these results are also not recognized by international standards. So why implement them at all?
Carcinogenicity: Tests are usually performed on rats and mice. Not because they would respond to such substances much like humans, but because they are practical: small and cheap. These carcinogens apply to them everywhere: on the skin, under the skin, in the body… The value of these tests is very limited, because too high doses are used here to get a realistic estimate, and it takes quite some time for cancer to develops. However, the differences between the reactions of these animals and humans were one of the biggest, as the results of animal tests were similar to the reactions of humans in only 37% of cases!
Effects on reproductive ability: substances that are used only on the skin and there is almost no possibility of them being ingested in large quantities should not be tested at all.
Testing whether a substance can affect the mutilation of offspring: these tests are very expensive, time-consuming and unreliable. Eg a substance causes congenital mutilation in humans at a concentration of 0.5 mg / kg body weight, and in rabbits 30 mg / kg! In addition, aspirin causes deformity in rats, mice, cats, dogs, and monkeys, but not in humans.
Testing the effectiveness of the final product: in the vast majority of cases, the effectiveness of the final product can be determined on the basis of tests of the individual ingredients it contains. As many as four European countries have banned such testing, namely Germany, Switzerland, the Netherlands and the United Kingdom.
For all these tortures of helpless animals, of course, there are alternative methods. These methods are very effective and reliable for testing both cosmetic and household products, as well as for other tests and trials. In addition, they are usually shorter and significantly cheaper, and they are not disturbed due to different results between different species of animals and other disturbing factors. If we take cancer experiments as an example: animal testing can take up to 8 years, the results are very unreliable and cost $ 400,000. The same test with alternative methods is completed in a few days, the results we get are accurate and cost only 200 to 4,000 US dollars!
These methods include in-vitro tests, computer simulations, data from tests already performed (so as not to duplicate tests), and with the help of volunteers. Thus, the Eytex method has been adopted for testing eye irritants, in which instead of applying harmful substances to animals in forcibly opened eyes, they grow the necessary tissue on the membrane and apply the irritant to it and observe changes. In addition to this, some other in vitro methods are available. Skintex, Corrositex, Testskin…, use of dead and animal skin, cultured or cloned skin and other tissues from cell and other cultures, with the help of Corrositex volunteers, are used to test photosensitivity, skin absorption rate and other skin tests. is an in vitro method that uses a protein membrane that is designed to react like human skin. This method gives results in just a few hours and one test costs only $ 100. The Eytex and Skintex methods (also called the Irritation Assay System) can be used to test as many as 5,000 different substances.
Then we have computer and mathematical simulations based on the physical and chemical structures and properties of matter. These are very clear and precise. But various methods in the field of molecular biology, biochemistry… In short, the possibilities do not run out.
From all that has been written, we can therefore conclude that TESTING ON ANIMALS IS NEITHER NECESSARY OR ACCEPTABLE from an ethical, scientific, health or economic point of view. Just why should these creatures suffer so much if we have a myriad of other methods available that are significantly faster, more reliable, and even cheaper? In short, there is NO apology.