Is animal testing really necessary? Activists argue that technology can already replace animal testing completely, and that using animals is unnecessary and cruel. Proponents, on the other hand, point out that animal testing is strictly regulated in the European Union, and is used only for scientific research.

In 2013, the EU implemented a complete ban on of all cosmetics that had been tested on animals. Two years later, in June 2015, the European Commission rejected proposals in a European Citizens’ Initiative to also ban animal testing in scientific research. The Commission argued that it hopes to eventually phase out animal testing completely, but that it is currently a “complete ban on animal research in the EU would be premature and it would risk chasing out biomedical research from Europe.”

Rodents (primarily mice and rats) together with rabbits represented 80% of the animals used for testing purposes in the European Union in 2011. Reptiles, amphibians, and fish were the next most used group at 12.4%, followed by birds at 5.9%. Primates represented 0.05% of all animal testing in the EU.

Should animal testing be banned? Or would it risk scaring off biomedical research companies? Let us know your thoughts and comments in the form below and we’ll take them to policymakers and experts for their reactions!

IMAGE CREDITS: CC / Flickr – Tony Webster

71 comments Post a commentcomment

What do YOU think?

    • Lonzo Bildelberg

      this is so original

      but i must admit i’m a far more interesting specimen than you

    • Mani Gill

      😂😂 great answer bro,

    • Lonzo Bildelberg

      why test at all? keep tabs on buyers and test it after you sell it

      this is actually what deregulation means guys

    • Tacos

      I totally agree, but if only if humans are not forced to be a test subject.

  1. Ivan Burrows


    Without doubt yes but the scientific community must be given time to make alternative arrangements.

  2. Leonardo Monteiro

    Yes – but we need to be clear on this. I worked for a Cosmetic company, and i know for a fact that animal testing is useless, and no one wanted to do it (there are better and cheaper ways). Thing is, certain countries require by law that certain products be tested in animals.

  3. Daniel Parvanov

    Actually Big Pharma testing on people in India almost directly, life is cheap there they give them couple of thousands $ (time to time someone die in agony and relatives talk on popular / discovery channel movie and that is ) think animal lover are ok with that…

  4. Andrea Brown

    Animal testing will not exist in ten years anyway, so banning it is pointless. Cells on a chip will be replacing animal testing. Just let the technology develop and replace the animals as the technology will be cheaper, so be adopted quickly when it is perfected.

    • catherine benning

      And once you eliminate the usefulness of animals, so they disappear from our sight. Just as the horse is on the way out. How many do you see as you drive through the rural areas of our countries? Which, once upon a time, was covered in them? Their upkeep is extremely expensive. If we all become vegetarians, so we will no longer see sheep, herds of beef or pigs in the fields we drive past. They will be too expensive to feed.

      I take it you feel extinction for them is better than the cruelty of testing? Yet you will eat animals who are grossly over medicated to increase their size and deforms their shape outrageously. They are filled with hormones and antibiotics and you eat it. Paying through the nose to do so. Then wonder at why the human being has become so obese. Of course it couldn’t be because what they eat is what you live by. Could it!

      Likewise the different species we see today. If animals no longer represent us clinically, they will gradually, or, not so gradually, disappear.

      Be careful what you wish for.

  5. Matej Zaggy Zagorc

    I see no reason to test on animals while there are pedophiles, murderers… and politicians around we can use.

  6. Eamonn Fitzpatrick

    Stop all animal testing and stop all animal cruelty.

  7. EU Reform- Proactive

    …” the European Commission rejected proposals in a European Citizens’ Initiative…….”

    Doesn’t this issue demonstrate once more that such “powerful agenda-setting tool” like a European Citizens’ Initiative” is nothing more than another facade to propagate EU (fake) democracy by the invisible treaty authors?

    Since its inception in 2012 no “Citizens’ Initiative” was successful- because to EC has the last word! Seems, EU citizens are considered useful democratic idiots who are “allowed” to waste their time & money on sentimental issues- which could be left to the responsible science community to handle.

    How important is “animal testing” in relation to e.g. “Right2Water”?

  8. Shauna Murray

    Yes it should be banned. It is cruel and selfish for humans to test on animals and no animal deserves to be locked up all day let alone have chemicals and all sorts of stuff rubbed on their skin, squirted into their eyes or shoved down their throats.

  9. Carmel Ní Shúilleabháin

    Animal testing shoukd be banned. All animal cruelty should be illegal and laws enforced.

  10. Stefan Treue

    Should animal testing be banned?
    – Except for highly regulated exceptions research on animals is already prohibited. That is why we eat hundreds of times more animals (barely restricted use of animals) than we need for animal research (highly regulated use of animals)
    Is animal testing really necessary?
    – Animal research projects are only permitted wenn they are necessary, i.e. when no alternatives exist. For cosmetics development they have been banned long ago. For scientific and medical progress (including veterinary medicine) they are still irreplaceable.

  11. cyril

    Simple answer in we consider the well-being for every living things on this earth but with a prioritization for humans: when it is possible to do technically without animal, just forbidden hurting and painful experiment on animal. And in case it is not technically possible to do without animal, just question the benefit for the society. If it is related to life, e.g. deceases or so painful handicaps it is not human way to live, it is fair to authorized it but by funding another way to experiment.

    • Rob Parry

      Testing what? Jees do you not think enough is enough!

    • Šenvi Trenk

      I propose testing on death row criminals, pedophiles and life sentenced.

    • Marko Martinović

      For medication etc. There is also human testing, but no one minds that.

    • Alexandre Graça

      Rob Parry, please explain how a drug called etanercept (Humira (R) ) was developed.

    • Tim Nick Knight

      I think Poland should focus on cleaning its disgusting air, and not stopping science

    • Zbigniew Jankowski

      I speak for myself and Your absolutly good remark about the clean air is as important as the ban on which we are sharing our individual opinions. Killing and testing anything on animals is no science.
      On the clean air issue, please also find the courage and write something about this to the polish government. I’ll support Y’re effort with my like.

    • Rob Parry

      Wow how uninformed!

    • Lonzo Bildelberg

      oh yeah blabla in vitro research more bla different metabolism and blabla

    • Paulo Granadeiro

      Strange the ones who want to stop the animal tests don’t answer this simple question !

    • Ivan Burrows

      We do test directly on humans, they are called clinical trials.

    • Rob Parry

      Yes we should! Most murderers are all fair game as far as I’m concerned!

    • A.c. Spyred

      Rob Parry, you are talking about war. Even there is still war, one goal of EU is stopping that. 7 decades ago, those lands were in war. This is maybe because UE lands are uncomfortable with those “fair murder”.

  12. Mantas R Rukuiža

    There should be no question here. You have to test on something, but i would like to see the law that forces to use Artificial Intellgence first (AI). Moral answer is STOP.

  13. Alexandre Graça

    No for 3 reasons:
    1) There is no way of knowing if a new drug is safe to use in humans (and how effective it will be) without testing on animals first.
    2) In certain contexts, no one has yet found a way to fully substitute an entire organism, and you need one to know what will the effect of a substance be in that context (not recreated by cell cultures, and not entirely by computer models; the latter can be used but if your main question is to know what will the effect of this drug be in an organism, you won’t get that answer unless the organism is there; see the concept of ADMET); for example: certain antibiotics can cause cardiac arrhythmias; what if a drug intended to control diabetes causes cancer?; the immune system is completely dispersed by the organism. Biological drugs like antibodies and antibodies used as tools for scientific research are developed in whole live animals and then their spleens must be taken out to follow up with the hybridoma technology. You don’t have a replacement for this.
    3) The concept of replacing animals by cell cultures to cease their suffering is ludicrous. Cells come from animals!

    Also, see the 3R’s innitiative.

    There are regulations. Read the text please. For cosmetics it was already done. Cosmetics isn’t the same as science.
    Its a necessary evil that must continue, but wherever possible, reduce, refine, and replace.

  14. Ellen Heidbüchel

    Animal testing for cosmetics is banned for a couple of years already in the EU, as is the import of cosmetics tested on animals. But for medical reasons it seems to be unavoidable. I just translated a report about it – and the people dealing with such questions are not nasty, cruel animal haters, but promote alternative methods wherever possible.

  15. Maria Gomes-Solecki

    Without animal testing you would not have ANY of the medicines to treat cancer, infectious diseases or vaccines. Think about the consequences before you speak. And NO the industry is not ready to forego animal testing and produce effective treatments for pretty much anything. If you ban regulated animal testing in the EU it will simply be done elsewhere.

  16. Anna Garner

    Yes it should. If there is fear what harm it could cause then don’t use! Natural products non chemical and that is all!!

  17. Susan Caryl Harper

    See Dr Hadwen Trust, no need to test on animals.
    Human population keeps growing, there is no shortage of humans, we probably do need a catastrophe to check us.

  18. Pasha Se

    Adult proponents of the ban MUST get ONLY those types of medical treatment that were developed without animal experiments. And they MUST officially declare their views BEFORE they are ill. ;-) P.S. Their children have a right to be cured with all methods. Children are not responsible for idiotism of their parents.

  19. r

    Animal testing for medical reasons a not a realy bad thing, but not a good thing either. Animal testing for cosmetic reasons, that is realy bad. Why do these animals have to suffer for our cosmetic products?

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