My New Dog Howard
Posted on 07/16/2015
First, if you haven't read my first post on animal testing, I ask that you read that before reading this post. You'll learn a little bit about animal testing, what it means to me, and what Beagle Freedom Project (BFP) is doing to combat the unnecessary cruelty that animals go through. One of the newest programs that BFP started is called the Identity Campaign. For small donation, you can "adopt" an animal in a lab, give it a name, have the option to obtain the records of the animal, and help BFP acquire it if it is released from the lab.
My wife decided that both of us should be involved in this campaign. She adopted a dog for herself and surprised me with one as well. I have always wanted a hound named Howard (we didn't choose Diego's name), and Domenica appropriately chose this as the name for my adopted dog. She named her dog Lucky. About a week later we each received a package from BFP that included an adoption certificate, a tag with our dog's identification number, and a records request form letter. We were very excited and sent the letters right away.
Our dogs are both being held at the University of Missouri. Missouri has a law called the Sunshine Law that allows people to request the records of animals in government funded lab testing facilities. Of course, it takes time and money to prepare and ship these records. In the letter, we stated that we would be willing to pay up to $50 preparation and shipping costs. I anticipated the lab to take all the money I was willing to give them. When I received the email response from the university, I was surprised that they wanted $531.90 for preparation and shipping. They also requested $410.25 from Domenica for Lucky's records. This is an obvious attempt to derail our efforts to potentially help these two dogs, or uncover exactly what has been done to them.
The people at University of Missouri should be ashamed of themselves. I know there is a graduate student that would gladly accept minimum wage to collect, copy, and ship these records. Even if this person makes $10 per hour (I never made that much in college in San Diego), it would take over 94 hours of work to make those fees legitimate. Domenica even joked that we could fly to Missouri and get the records ourselves for less than the $942.15 they are asking from us. Thankfully, the wonderful people at Beagle Freedom Project are helping us deal with the university and get these fees to a more reasonable level. I look forward to sharing the results of our inquiry.