I know that your office considers major violations of the Animal Welfare Act to be very serious in nature, especially when these violations unnecessarily kill animals. Since the Washington University has now committed three violations of exactly the same section of the Animal Welfare Act in three inspections within sixteen months and all three of these citations were considered to be CRITICAL, and all three of these citations were directly linked to the death of an animal, I must insist that you take the most severe action allowable under the Animal Welfare Act and immediately begin the process of issuing the maximum fine allowable against Washington University at the completion of your investigation — $10,000 per infraction/per animal."Even first-year students would know enough to contact veterinary staff if complications occur following surgery,” Bunkie says in a prepared statement. “Washington University deserves the maximum penalty for violating federal law and carelessly killing three animals."
As long as your office continues to consider enforcement of the Animal Welfare Act a priority, you must take serious action against labs which repeatedly kill animals. You must THROW THE BOOK at Washington University. I look forward to hearing from you in the near future about the fate of this facility.
The respectful care and treatment of animals in research studies is paramount to Washington University. Recently, a dog recovering from a surgical procedure developed serious complications, and the research technicians monitoring the animal did not promptly consult the on-call veterinarian staff as required by the university and federal regulations. Unfortunately, the dog died.
Washington University voluntarily reported the animal’s death to the USDA, and the research technicians involved in monitoring the dog were immediately suspended from all activities involving animals while the university conducted an investigation of the incident. Washington University is working proactively to prevent future incidents. This includes increasing oversight and retraining laboratory personnel about the criteria and responsibility for contacting the veterinary staff when complications occur.
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