USDA considers additional reporting rules for animal testing

USDA considers additional reporting rules for animal testing
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The Obama administration is considering amending its reporting requirements for research facilities that use animals for tests and experiments.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) is considering forcing research facilities to include information about how animals are being used for research and experiments in the annual reports they are required to submit to the Animal Care Regional Director in the states where they are located.

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The report, which is a requirement of the Animal Welfare Act, now requires facilities to state the location of all facilities where animals were housed and/or used for actual research, testing, teaching or experimentation.

Facilities must also list common names and the number of animals involved in procedures where animals were given pain relieving drugs, procedures where animals were given an anesthetic or tranquilizer to relieve pain or distress, and procedures where animals in pain or distress were not given pain relieving drugs becuase it would have adversely affected the experiment or test.

Common names and numbers of animals being bred, conditioned or held for teaching, testing, research, experiments or surgery that have not yet been used must also be listed in the report.

APHIS said it's considering a petition it received in December from the National Anti-Vivisection Society that asked the agency to force research facilities to provide a sufficient level of detail about how animals are being used for research.

APHIS is asking the public what information is missing from the annual report, what types of information should be provided and what effects additional reporting requirements will have on research facilities.

The public has until Aug. 24 to submit comments.