Use of animals for research

Tom King made this Freedom of Information request to Royal Veterinary College

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Dear Royal Veterinary College,

I write in accordance with the Freedom of Information Act 2000.

For the purposes of clarification, by 'research’ I mean any activity which falls within the Animal (Scientific Procedures) Act 1986 (“ASPA”) and ‘breeding’ as any activity in relation to acting as a Designated Breeding & Supply Establishment (“DBSE”) under ASPA.

Please supply details of the following:

1) By species, the number of animals used by the College for research in 2012

2) By species, the number of animals bred by the College for research in 2012

3) By species, the number of animals supplied externally to the College for research in 2012

4) By species, the number of animals currently held by the College for research purposes

I understand that, under the Act, I am entitled to a response within 20 days.

I would be grateful if you could confirm you have received this request, and I look forward to hearing from you in the near future.

Yours faithfully,

Tom King

FOI, Royal Veterinary College

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Dear Mr King

 

I am writing to acknowledge receipt of your request for data under the
terms of The Freedom of Information Act and shall respond again in due
course.

 

Yours sincerely,

 

Simon Jackson

 

FOI Officer

Royal Veterinary College

 

 

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FOI, Royal Veterinary College

1 Attachment

Dear Mr King

 

I am now in a position to respond to your request for data under the terms
of The Freedom of Information Act.

 

 

The Royal Veterinary College undertakes the education and training of
veterinary and para-veterinary students and as such is wholly committed to
animal health and welfare.

The Royal Veterinary College shares society’s desire to minimise the use
of animal experimentation, improve the welfare of animals in research* and
increase the use of scientifically validated alternative methods that
reduce, refine or replace** the use of animal models.

 

We are of the opinion that animal experimentation is still a necessary
part of the scientific discovery process and development of new medicines
for veterinary use that will ultimately benefit animals worldwide. Where
this approach is deemed necessary, our research is subject to a rigorous
and independent approval process by the College’s Ethics and Welfare
Committee.

 

* The Royal Veterinary College is currently undertaking research to
improve the welfare of experimental animals

**Replacement includes ethically designed studies involving veterinary
clinical patients (phase 2 clinical trials conducted under ASPA) to
advance both veterinary and human medicine

 

Please see below for a detailed response to your questions:

 

 

Q1.      By species, the number of animals used by the College for
research in 2012

 

·       Domestic fowl: 618

·       Adult rats: 2941

·       Adult rats with harmful genetic defect: 6

·       Genetically modified adult mice:  3288

·       Normal Adult mice: 867

·       Adult Mice with harmful genetic defect: 14

·       Adult rabbits: 11

·       Adult horses, donkeys and cross bred equids: 45

·       Adult sheep: 57

·       Adult zebrafish: 53

·       Adult zebrafish genetically modified: 968

·       Adult Emus: 6

·       Adult genetically modified pigs: 38

·       Adult pigs: 185

·       Cattle: 295

·       Adult beagles: 8

·       Adult cats(client owned veterinary patients): 81

·       Adult dogs (client owned veterinary patients): 66

·       Adult dogs (with harmful genetic defect): 2

·       Adult Guinea Pigs: 13

Q2.      By species, the number of animals bred by the RVC for research in
2012

 

Certain animals, listed in Schedule 2 to the Act, have to be obtained from
designated breeding or supplying establishments. The species so listed
during the calendar year were: mouse, rat, guinea pig, hamster, gerbil,
rabbit, cat, dog, ferret, primate and quail (Coturnix coturnix); also pigs
(if genetically modified), and sheep (if genetically modified).  These are
called Schedule 2 animals.

 

Please note that in most cases these Schedule 2 animals were bred here,
but for some there may be instances where an animal is brought in from an
external supplier and then passed on at a later date. 

 

Schedule 2 animals:

 

·       Genetically modified adult mice:  2950

·       Normal adult mice: 130

·       Adult Mice with harmful genetic defect: 14

·       Adult genetically modified pigs:  38

 

Non schedule 2 animals:

 

The following animals are classed as non schedule 2 animals. Although we
have data for where these animals have been obtained from, this is not
recorded in a way that would allow us to easily provide accurate figures.
 The time required to provide this data would exceed the 18 hours we are
obliged to spend without charging for our time.  We are therefore not able
to indicate whether they were bred or brought into the College.

 

·       618 Domestic fowl

·       45 Adult Horse, donkey and cross-bred equids

·       57 Adult sheep

·       53 Adult Zebrafish

·       968 Adult Zebrafish (genetically modified)

·       6 Adult emus

·       185 Adult pigs

·       295 Cattle

 

 

Q3.      By species, the number of animals supplied externally to the
College for research in 2012

           

Schedule 2 animals

 

·       2941 Adult rats

·       6 Adult rats – with harmful genetic defect

·       737 Adult mice

·       338 Adult mice – genetically modified

·       11 Adult rabbits

·       8 Adult beagles

·       81 Adult cats: Client owned pets

·       65 Adult dogs: Client owned pets

·       2 Adult dogs (with harmful genetic defect):  belonged to an animal
breeder - donated to the College because of the genetic defect.

·       1 Adult dog

·       13 Adult Guinea pig

 

Q4.      By species, the number of animals currently held by the College
for research purposes

 

           

Species Jul-13
Ferrets 20
Fish 562
Rodent - Guinea Pigs 19
Rodent - Mice 2706
Rabbits 2
Rodent - Rats 85
Rodent - Gerbils 147
Sheep 72
Pigs 43
Llamas 2
Alpacas 6
Horses 9
Ponies 21
Dogs 4
Turkeys 6
Guinea Fowl 5
Emus 9

 

 

The RVC is satisfied that in making this response, it has complied with
the requirements of the Freedom of Information Act. If, for any reason,
you are not satisfied with this response, you should request an internal
review by writing to The Assistant Principal and College Secretary, Royal
Veterinary College, Hawkshead Lane, North Mymms, Hatfield, AL9 7TA, who
will ensure that this is dealt with accordingly. There is no charge for
such a request. Should you still be dissatisfied with the outcome of any
such complaint, you have the right to make a complaint via the Information
Commissioner, pursuant to Section 50 of the Freedom of Information Act,
via The Information Commissioner’s Office, Wycliffe House, Water Lane,
Wilmslow, Cheshire, SK9 5AF.

 

Yours sincerely,

 

 

 

Simon Jackson

 

FOI Officer

Royal Veterinary College

 

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