November 10, 2014
Kim Basinger Calls for End to GRU Dog Experiments
by Catherine Hess
It's been more than a year since actress Kim Basinger first watched the undercover video. And yet, as she acknowledged recently: “The horrifying footage still haunts me to this day.”
The 2013 HSUS investigation spotlighted the use of dogs in gruesome dental experiments at Georgia Regents University. Researchers pulled the dogs’ teeth, replaced them with dental implants and then later performed surgery to remove two small fragments of bone from their jaws. The animals were then euthanized.
“I am terribly alarmed to learn that GRU has yet to confirm to The HSUS and concerned citizens across the country that these experiments have and will permanently cease,” Basinger wrote recently in a letter to GRU president Dr. Ricardo Azziz [PDF].
“I simply can't sit by any longer as more dogs may potentially be having their lives taken by GRU.”
With his bashful but friendly nature, a hound mix named Shy Guy won the heart of the HSUS investigator last year—only to lose his life to these needless experiments. He was so anxious that he didn’t eat. He chewed his paws. And lying on the cold steel cage was exacerbating a stomach rash. The investigator brought him a surgical sheet to use as a blanket and sat with him until he ate. “He was adorable,” she says. “He was my buddy.”
The plight of Shy Guy and the other dogs moved Basinger to donate her voiceover work for an HSUS video documenting those experiments.
After the investigation was released, thousands of people urged the university to stop the experiments. GRU did cease using dogs from random-source Class B dealers, who acquire animals from sources such as flea markets, shelters and “free to good home” ads. But to date, the school still refuses to halt the research.
“I implore you,” Basinger writes, “to stop these unnecessary experiments permanently and share your decision with us without further delay.”