Dogs and Cats No Longer Used for Research May Have a Chance for a Loving Home

NAVS launches nationwide initiative to promote adoption of lab animals

Update: North Dakota introduces the first new bill in 2017 (New Jersey’s session runs from 2016-17). Watch this page for more state bills!

In 2017, NAVS has launched a campaign to encourage legislators to support a law to require laboratories that use dogs and cats for research to adopt out healthy animals when they have finished the research, testing or educational activity for which they are being used. NAVS has targeted the states that, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, use the most dogs and cats for research purposes. Letters went out to thousands of legislators to sponsor a bill this year to give dogs and cats used for research a chance at a loving home.

In 2014, Minnesota passed a law that required publicly-funded institutions of higher learning to adopt out their dogs and cats used for research and education instead of routinely euthanizing them when they are no longer needed. While this measure will not end the use of these animals for research, it does reflect a new trend recognizing that animals deserve to enjoy a good life after their time spent in a laboratory.

Since the Minnesota bill was passed, five other states—Minnesota, California, Connecticut, Nevada and New York—have already adopted similar legislation.

A 2015 Gallup poll showed that 67% of Americans were “very” or “somewhat” concerned about animals used for research. The public largely agrees that animals no longer needed for research should be offered for adoption. Now we just have to convince legislators to join in the effort.

If you live in a state that has legislation pending, please contact your legislator and encourage them to support this legislation.

If you live in a state that does not yet have this legislation, please consider downloading a model bill from the Animal Law Resource Center and sending it to your state legislator for consideration.

Pending legislation

New Jersey, S 2344 and A 4298 Would require institutions of higher education to offer a cat or dog used in research to an animal rescue organization for adoption prior to euthanizing the animal.


North Dakota, HB 1267  Would require public higher education institution research facilities to offer dogs or cats no longer needed for research to an animal rescue organization or animal shelter for adoption before euthanizing the animals.


This entry was posted in News on January 18, 2017.
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