Animal Research: A Controversial Debate - Essay Sample

Published: 2023-09-11
Animal Research: A Controversial Debate - Essay Sample
Type of paper:  Essay
Categories:  Biology Animals
Pages: 5
Wordcount: 1218 words
11 min read


Over a long period, animals have been used in scientific research. Such research aims to develop medicines and vaccines for various diseases and conditions that emerge. Animals that are commonly used in the study include dogs, bats, and monkeys, among others. In the contemporary world, there is everyday emergence of medical conditions that necessitate research to cure or mitigate the effects (Harriss et al, 2019). However, the use of animals in research has raised controversy over years with pundits raising a moral and ethical question

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Similarly, others have questioned the effectiveness of using animals as their genetic combination is not necessarily like that of Human beings. On one hand, there is a positive side because some of the experiments carried out lead to the development of medicines that save human lives. On the other hand, animal activist raises concern that it is unfair to subject animals to pain, suffering, distress, or even death for issues that seldom concern them. Surprisingly, violating the right of animals in such ways has attracted strong emotions.

Estimates indicate that more than 25 million animals are used in scientific research in the US. This includes the animals that are used for commercial testing. In the field of medicine, animals are used as control experiments to test the toxicity of the poisons to assess their safety for human consumption. Some critics of Animal testing believe that some of these involvements are unnecessary. For example, the use of animals to develop treatment of HIV/AIDS, whereas it is apparent that the decease is purely a Human immune virus. This essay seeks to prove that for whatever purpose, it is unnecessary to use animals in scientific research.

Outline of Major Research Areas

The main points to be covered by this essay includes an examination of why the use of animals in testing is inhuman. In this, the piece will analyze what the animals go through in laboratories and other research centers. Secondly, the paper will research whether it is possible to carry out experiments on human beings instead of animals. The essay will also analyze other alternatives for research other than the use of animals. Lastly, the essay will examine the viability of using animals in research, and if the results that are yielded are helpful. In any case, it is quite apparent that the treatment that responds well to animals may not respond well to human beings.

The Tests are Painful and Inhumane

Animals that are subjected to research experience severe pain and suffering in the laboratories and outside. These animals are sometimes exposed to multiple infections that adversely affect their bodies (Boll et al, 2018). They let them suffer as the researcher observes the symptoms and how the animal behaves in such stressful conditions. Later the animals may be injected with manufactured poisons that are later used as medicines. These poisons are sometimes excessively toxic and end up killing the animals instead of curing them. Other times the doses injected trigger allergic reactions whereby animals suffer at length.

Further to that, the animals are fed forcefully and deprived of the privilege of having essential parts of the diets drinking water. Humane society international raised concern over the issue wounding animals to study the healing process. The agriculture department in the United States indicated that in January 2020, it had used over 300,000 animals in painful researches. It is inhuman to subject such a massive percentage to distressing study.

The Tests May Be Conducted On Human Volunteers

Instead of testing the various toxins and infections on animals, the same can be done on willing humans. Unlike animals, human beings can consent or decline to participate; hence it is reasonable to engage them. A classic example is the recent COVID-19 pandemic. In this case, the tests are subjected to people, and observation is done on how they react. One of the companies that offered to undertake the checks, Moderna Therapeutics, adopted a new technological approach (Negahdaripour, 2020). In this, they involved a synthetic copy of the Corona virus genetic code. This approach is reasonable and efficient too. Generally, it is better to observe the reaction of the prescription in a human being as there is certainty about the results. The clinical trial of this approach is expected to bear fruits.

Inaccurate Results

Additionally, the genetic composition of animals is different from that of humans. If Viewed on the paradigm of body metabolism and cellular disparities, the result may be inaccurate as such animals are unsuitable models for humans. Animals consume different foods from human beings hence the likelihood of responding the same even put in the same clinical circumstances. It will give null results if we want to test a sample of infectious disease on human with a fish. Usually, the reactions in a 1kg Fish would be mostly different from a 65kg human. The response of animals to toxins is different. Lastly, animals may not be able to express some of the effects that may not be established by observation.

Animal Testing is Expensive

Conducting the test on animals is an expensive and lengthy affair. The process may include rearing the animals or having to go to the wild to hunt animals that may be used for testing. There are additional costs to raise the animals and keep them for prolonged periods waiting for the results. The total cost of maintaining a single dog that may be used to conduct the test exceeds $8000 year. This, even though the tests mainly do not bear the expected results. When the cost of the laboratory is included, the expenses escalate to unsustainable levels.

Critics’ View on the Use of Alternative Testing

The proponents of animal testing suggest that this practice saves human lives and provides treatment for various deceases. They believe that many successful types of research conducted have used animals. While this is not disputed, the critics ought to understand that there can be alternative methods that would yield the same result (Waddington, 2017). There are high chances of getting inaccurate results from the tests. The pundits who support the animal tests believe that there is a moral and ethical question in subjecting a human being to the tests. Either way, it is equally unfair to subject animals to toxic substances where they suffer intense pain. All living creatures should be subjected to human treatment.


In conclusion, the use of animals in scientific research should be outlawed. Unlike human beings, animals are not able to consent to these tests. It is unfair for any healthy living creature to be unnecessarily exposed to decease, causing pathogens. Animals suffer to death due to the deprivation of essential needs like water. Others are injected with poisons that are intended to be used as medicine in the future. With the advanced technology in the field of medicine, alternative, simple methods should be used in research.


Boll, S., De Minas, A. A., Raftogianni, A., Herpertz, S. C., & Grinevich, V. (2018). Oxytocin and pain perception: from animal models to human research. Neuroscience, 387, 149-161.

Harriss, D. J., MacSween, A., & Atkinson, G. (2019). Ethical standards in sport and exercise science research: 2020 update. International Journal of Sports Medicine, 40(13), 813-817.

Negahdaripour, M. (2020). The battle against COVID-19: Where do we stand now?. Iranian journal of medical sciences, 45(2), 81.

Waddington, C. H. (2017). The ethical animal. Routledge.

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