It is estimated that more than 115 million animals—including mice, rats, birds, fish, rabbits, guinea pigs, farm animals, dogs, cats, and non-human primates—are used and/or killed in laboratory experiments each year around the world.Humane Society International
Some health, beauty and household products that we use everyday are tested on animals. Animals undergo harmful experiments that subject them to injections, force feeding, radiation exposure, toxic gases, organ and/or tissue removal. These experiments cause the animals symptoms such as irritation, pain, bleeding and death.
Animals used in experiments are usually bred for this purpose by the laboratory or in breeding facilities. It’s a cruel, multi-million dollar industry. Cruelty Free International believes that all animals are equally important. A dog bred for research is still a dog who could otherwise live a happy life in a loving home.Cruelty Free International
But for what reason do we rely on animal testing? Animals are different to humans, diseases that are present in humans are not in animals, specific foods that are harmless to humans are harmful to animals, drugs that “seem to work” on animals are ineffective on humans. There are many reasons to suggest that animal testing is unreliable, Cruelty Free International stated that “90% of drugs fail in human trials despite promising results in animal tests”, shocking! Check out other facts on their page. There are however many reliable ways to test products for human use that do not cause any harm, such as cell cultures, human tissues and computer models.
Many products state “not tested on animals” on the back however this can be misleading. What they sometimes mean is ‘this final product is not tested on animals’, but the ingredients and prototypes were, or we paid someone else to do it. A small few companies are very open about the fact that they test on animals, but others are not and will dodge the question or give a very ambiguous response.
Cruelty free is when a product is not tested on animals, including the ingredients, and there are hundreds of cruelty free certified products. It is important to look out for specific certification logos such as Cruelty Free International Leaping Bunny, PETA or Choose Cruelty Free. When a company is certified cruelty free, the brand, suppliers and manufacturers do not test on animals, nor do they pay a third party to, therfore the products and ingredients are completely free of animal testing. You can check Cruelty Free International Leaping Bunny certified companies using their search, PETA’s Beauty Without Bunnies to see what companies do or do not test on animals or Choose Cruelty Free‘s A-Z list of accredited companies.
It is also important to keep in mind parent companies. Big companies that test on animals may own other littler companies that do not test of animals. I have read many blogs arguing for and against purchasing products from a cruelty free company that is owned by a non cruelty free company. Reasons for buying them, they are still cruelty free and if more people purchase cruelty free it lets the parent company know this is prefered. Reasons against buying them are the money is still paid into the parent company and therefore indirectly supporting animal testing. It is up to you to decide.
I have strived to be cruelty free since I became vegetarian in 2017. I only purchase products with certified cruelty free logos. At the beginning, I went through all of my products to discover that almost all of them were not certified cruelty free. I did some research into my favourite brands to find that they were big offenders when it came to animal testing. I ditched the old stuff and searched for new brands to love. I still can’t say I am 100% cruelty free, but I am working towards it whilst encouraging others to join me.
Have a nice day!