By: Kalie Savill

Right now, millions of mice, rats, rabbits, cats, and dogs are locked inside barren cages in laboratories across the country. These animals are lonely and terrified of the next painful procedure that will be performed on them. More than 100 million animals suffer and die in the U.S every year in cruel chemical, drug, food, and cosmetic tests. Many companies such as Windex, Maybelline, Pantene, Mac, Revlon, and Old Spice still test on animals today. Some examples of animal tests include forcing mice and rats to inhale toxic fumes, force-feeding pesticides to dogs, and dripping corrosive chemicals into the sensitive eyes of rabbits. Even if a product harms animals, it can still be marketed to consumers, and just because a product was shown to be safe on animals it does not guarantee that it will be safe to use on humans.

Why would these companies continue to test on these innocent animals when there are different ways to test these products? There are many non animal testing methods that can be used in place of tests on animals. Not only are these non-animal tests more humane, they also have the potential to be cheaper, faster, and more relevant to humans. Harvard’s Wyss Institute has created “Organs on chips” that contains human cells grown in a state of the art system to mimic the structure and function of human organ systems. The chips can be used instead of animals in disease research, drug testing and toxicity testing. Additionally, they have been shown to replicate human physiology, diseases, and drug responses more accurately than crude animal experiments do. Researchers have also developed a wide range of sophisticated computer models that simulate human biology and the progression of developing diseases, studies show that these models can accurately predict the ways that new drugs will react in the human body.

While some of the experimentation conducted on animals today is required by law, most of it is not. In fact, a number of countries have implemented bans on the testing of certain types of products on animals, such as the cosmetics testing bans in the European Union, India, and Israel. I highly encourage everyone to stop using the companies that do test on animals and to only use companies that ban animal testing. Here are a few companies that do not test on animals: Burt’s Bees, Mountain Green, White rain, and Wet ‘N’ Wild.