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Tag: shepherd mix

Cruella’s cruel fate

When a German shepherd mix was found wandering in Carson City, Michigan, it was clear form the purple collar and chain she wore that she was somebody’s pet.

But before the year was out, she was a laboratory animal — getting probed, operated on and tested at the University of Florida.

According to the American Anti-Vivisection Society, which documented the dog’s case as part of its recent investigation into use of dogs and cats at American colleges and universities, what happened to her happens hundreds of times a year.

When she was picked up, she had no ID tags. She was deemed a stray and taken to Montcalm County Animal Control. There, she resided in pen No. 20, unclaimed by owners, unadopted by a new family.

Then R&R Research stopped by. A class B animal dealer, R&R purchased the dog and others, nmed her E6993, and ensured she would never be anybody’s pet again. The process is known as “pound seizure and it is banned in 13 states, including Maryland.

She remained at R&R for 6 months, likely spending most of her time in a cage with little or no human companionship. Her next stop was the University of Florida, which bought the dog from R&R.

Class B dealers are licensed by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) to buy animals from “random sources” and sell them to animal research facilities for biomedical research, testing, and educational purposes. “Random sources” include auctions, flea markets, animal shelters, or pretty much anywhere else that agrees to deal with them. Their numbers have dwindled in the face of criticism and new laws, but as of this year, there are still 11 Class B dealers selling dogs and cats to research institutions in the United States.

After traveling more than 1,000 miles with 13 other dogs, E6993 was named Cruella by veterinary students at the University of Florida. During her seven months there, she was sedated or anesthetized 7 times, often for hours at a time, and used in medical training procedures, including endoscopy, abdominal surgery, and ultrasound exercises, by both veterinary students and veterinarians.

Cruella also underwent surgery with the intention to spay her, but it was discovered, after her abdominal cavity was opened, that she was already spayed, further pointing to the fact that she was once someone’s pet.

After that, Cruella began experiencing a loss of appetite. It’s unclear whether her problem was kennel stress, the continued isolation, or the many procedures and probes she underwent.

On July 23, 2008, 195 days after her arrival at the University of Florida and over a year after she was found in Michigan, Cruella was killed by lethal injection.

(Illustration — not Cruella — courtesy of Last Chance for Animals)