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18th of July 2018

New Zealand

NZ to Start Encouraging the Rehoming of Ex-Lab Animals

Wednesday, 4 July 2018, 4:47 pmPress Release: NZAVS

The Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI) has announced their support for the rehoming of ex-lab animals in New Zealand. This declaration comes after MPs in the Primary Production Select Committee decided against a petition that was asking for a mandatory retirement policy for ex-lab animals, to help encourage rehoming and prevent unnecessary euthanasia.

Both MPI and the National Animal Ethics Advisory Committee (NAEAC) are now developing initiatives to support rehoming.

“MPI will do what it can to encourage research, testing and teaching organisations to consider rehoming, and wants to remind people thinking of rehoming laboratory animals that they need to be properly prepared to meet all their needs,” stated Manager Animal Welfare at MPI, Kate Littin.

“Even though the Primary Production Select Committee said no to our petition, we weren’t put off from continuing our campaign to give ex-lab animals a second chance at life. We have been working hard behind the scenes, talking with MPI and bridging the gap of communication between us and decision makers,” stated NZAVS Executive Director, Tara Jackson.

“We are confident that this announcement is genuine and that we will see MPI work independently and with us to fulfil this promise and actively support the rehoming of ex-lab animals in NZ,” added Miss Jackson.

NZAVS and HUHA have openly stated that they are willing to be the first points of contact for any facility in NZ who has ex-lab animals that need rehoming and they are confident that they have the expertise and experience to successfully rehabilitate and rehome ex-lab animals.

NAEAC are also in support of encouraging the rehoming of ex-lab animals in NZ.

“As Chair of NAEAC, I will continue to raise awareness among animal ethics committees (AECs) and code holders that options are available for rehoming animals where it is appropriate,” said Chair of NAEAC, Grant Shackell.

NAEAC has also informed AECs that NZAVS and HUHA have offered to be the points of contact for organisations and researchers who may have animals that are appropriate for rehoming and is currently updating the Good practice guide for the use of animals in research, testing and teaching to include guidance for rehoming.

“Even though both HUHA and NZAVS are opposed to animal experimentation, there is no reason for the animals who are sadly still being used by the industry to be killed needlessly. We will monitor the changes being made by the NZ government and if needed, we will continue to lobby for a legislative incentive to be established in NZ,” stated HUHA Director Carolyn Press McKenzie.

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