New Bills in 2019 Promote Post-Research Adoption of Lab Animals; Washington and Oregon Laws Pass

In 2019, NAVS is once again strongly promoting legislation that will allow the adoption of healthy dogs and cats no longer needed by laboratories for research, testing or education. In 2018, Maryland, Delaware and Rhode Island passed laws to implement the adoption of animals from labs, bringing the total of state laws to nine (CA, CT, DE, IL, MD, MN, NV, NY, and RI).

So far this year, new legislation has been introduced in numerous states. NAVS actively promotes the passage of this legislation, even while striving to end the exploitation of all animals in the name of science, including dogs and cats. Until these animals are replaced in the laboratory with more humane and human-relevant models, we support efforts to show that the lives of these animals matter and that they deserve the chance of lives in loving homes. 

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

Pending legislation

IndianaHB 1604 Would require research facilities to enter into an agreement with an animal care facility for the adoption of any healthy animal no longer being used for testing, evaluation or observation to an animal shelter or animal rescue organization.

1/22/19 Referred to Committee on Agriculture and Rural Development

4/29/19 Session ends, bill dies in committee


Massachusetts, S.534, H.758, H.764 Would require research institutions and product testing facilities to offer cats and dogs used in research to an animal shelter or rescue organization for adoption if the animal is deemed appropriate for adoption. This bill substitutes for several other bills under consideration by the Massachusetts legislature, but would no longer limit the use of an animal by a research or testing facility to two years.


Michigan, HB 4496 Would require any private or public facility, where laboratory research is performed, to offer any adoptable dog or cat that would otherwise be euthanized to an animal rescue organization so that the animal may be made available for adoption.  

4/24/19 Introduced and referred to the Committee on Regulatory Reform



New Jersey, A 3274 and S 2826 Would require institutions of higher education to offer healthy dogs and cats no longer being used in research to an animal rescue organization for adoption. The “Homes for Animal Heroes Act.”

2/12/18 A 3274 introduced in Assembly

5/17/18 Reported out of Assembly Committee, 2nd reading

7/22/18 S 2826 introduced in Senate

9/13/18 S 2826 Reported from Senate Committee with amendments, 2nd reading

2/21/19 S 2826 Passed the Senate

2/25/19 Received in the House


Oregon, SB 638 Would require research facilities conducting research on animals to offer laboratory animals no longer used for research to an animal rescue entity for adoption prior to euthanizing them. This includes all animals in good health and posing no safety risk, not just dogs and cats.

1/24/19 Introduced and referred to Senate Judiciary Committee.

3/20/19 Public hearing held; 3/25 Committee recommended passage

3/28/19 Passed unanimously by Senate

4/8/19 Referred to House Judiciary Committee

5/2/19 Public hearing held

5/22/19 Committee recommends passage

5/30/19 Third reading, passed by House

6/5/19 Senate concurs with House amendments

6/13/19 Signed by the Governor


PennsylvaniaHB 238  Would require research facilities to offer healthy dogs and cats used in research to an animal shelter or rescue organization for adoption, or to arrange for private placement of the animal for adoption.

1/28/2019 referred to Agriculture and Rural Affairs



Texas, SB 121 and HB 146 Would require research facilities to offer healthy dogs and cats used in research to an animal shelter or rescue organization for adoption, or to arrange for private placement of the animal for adoption.

2/1/19  SB 121 Referred to Health and Human Services Committee

2/13/19 HB 146 Referred to Public Health Committee

4/23/19 Public hearing  on SB 121; Left pending on committee decision

4/24/19 Public hearing on HB 146; Left pending on committee decision

5/27/19 Session ends; bills die in committees


Virginia, HB 2590 Would require any animal testing facility that no longer has need for a dog or cat in its possession that does not pose a health or safety risk to the public to offer such dog or cat for adoption to a releasing agency or through a private placement, prior to euthanasia.

02/02/19 Left in Committee on Agriculture, Chesapeake and Natural Resources [tabled]. The session has now ended.


Washington, SB 5212 Would require publicly-funded higher education research facilities to offer dogs and cats to an animal rescue organization for adoption instead of euthanizing the animal once he was no longer needed for research or science.

02/05/19 Hearing before the Senate Committee on Higher Education and Workforce Development

03/11/19 Passed Senate with unanimous approval

03/20/19 Public hearing in House Committee on College & Workforce Development

04/09/19 Passed House amended bill with unanimous approval

04/19/19 Senate passed amended version

04/25/19 Delivered to Governor

04/28/19 Signed into law by Governor


Model Law
If your state does not already have a law or pending legislation, request your legislator to introduce a bill to require researchers to adopt out instead of euthanizing dogs and cats no longer needed for research. Give them a chance to spend their lives in a forever home.


For more information on the adoption of cats and dogs in research facilities, go to the NAVS website.


This entry was posted in News on June 20, 2019.
Comments are closed.