December 11, 2013
Research Facility in Georgia Repeatedly Violates Animal Welfare Act, Receives $26,000 Fine
The United States Department of Agriculture Animal and Plant Health Inspection Services cited T.R.S. Labs Inc., a research facility in Athens, Ga., for 25 violations of the Animal Welfare Act during March 2012 and March 2013. During the year, investigators inspected the facility seven times and found three animals had died and the welfare of at least 100 others, including 55 dogs, was compromised. The Humane Society of the United States is applauding the USDA for pursuing strict enforcement action, resulting in a fine of more than $26,000.
Violations include noncompliance regarding adequate veterinary care, housing facilities, space requirements and primary enclosures. The HSUS sent concerns about the well-being of animals housed by this facility to the USDA after reviewing violations of the AWA from the facility’s inspection reports. The HSUS provided USDA investigators with additional evidence obtained from a veterinarian who visited the facility in 2011.
It is important to continue and strengthen enforcement of the AWA to discourage noncompliance and increase assurance of the welfare of animals in research facilities. We urge the USDA to continue to assess significant civil penalties for all noncompliance affecting animal welfare.
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