© 2024 KLCC

136 W 8th Ave
Eugene OR 97401

Contact Us

FCC Applications
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

USDA To End Experiments Leading To Destruction Of Kittens

Jennifer C.

The USDA says it’s officially ending a controversial experiment that involves kittens. As KLCC’s Brian Bull reports, Oregon lawmakers and animal welfare advocates are delighted.

For decades, a lab in Maryland has bred up to 100 kittens a year, feeding them meat containing parasites. After harvesting the parasite’s eggs from their feces, the kittens were destroyed despite being treatable for the parasite.

Oregon U.S. Senator Jeff Merkley was a lead sponsor of the so-called KITTEN Act (Kittens In Traumatic Testing Ends Now), that would end the experiments.  In a statement, Merkley says the USDA has made the right call in ending the “archaic practice.”

Credit Alex Ranaldi / Flickr.com

Cary Lieberman, Executive Director of the Greenhill Humane Society in Eugene, also applauds the news.

“Animal life should be respected," Liberman tells KLCC.  "There’s not necessarily a move right now to end testing on live animals but if there’s a possibility of healing and treating the animals, and then adopting them into loving homes afterwards, those opportunities should be taken.”

Congress estimates $650,000 in taxpayer money has funded the USDA experiments since 1970.

Copyright 2019, KLCC.

Brian Bull is an assistant professor of journalism at the University of Oregon, and remains a contributor to the KLCC news department. He began working with KLCC in June 2016.   In his 27+ years as a public media journalist, he's worked at NPR, Twin Cities Public Television, South Dakota Public Broadcasting, Wisconsin Public Radio, and ideastream in Cleveland. His reporting has netted dozens of accolades, including four national Edward R. Murrow Awards (22 regional),  the Ohio Associated Press' Best Reporter Award, Best Radio Reporter from  the Native American Journalists Association, and the PRNDI/NEFE Award for Excellence in Consumer Finance Reporting.
Related Content