(breitbart) – Sen. Joni Ernst (R-IA) on Thursday sent a letter to Dr. Anthony Fauci, chief White House medical adviser and National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) head, demanding answers on the reports of the federal agency continuing to spend millions of taxpayer dollars on animal testing, specifically on dogs.
The letter, specifically, references NIAID’s recent decision to award $1.8 million for another experiment on dogs, testing an experimental drug for hay fever. Notably, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has reportedly said that it is not necessary to test on dogs.
“According to media reports and documents released through the Freedom of Information Act, the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) has awarded an exorbitant $1.8 million contract … for a series of tests on dogs and other animals to evaluate an experimental drug developed by a private biotechnology company to treat hay fever,” Ernst’s letter reads in part.
“I understand that at least five different NIAID-funded tests on dogs, including puppies as young as six-months old, are planned for this drug and will involve invasive, painful, and potentially deadly procedures,” she continued, noting that the testing commissioned by Fauci’s agency “appears to be unnecessary”:
According to the FOIA documents, NIAID’s contractor proposed an alternative, non-dog animal model to replace dogs for at least some testing. Additionally, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has stated that, “The FDA does not mandate that human drugs be studied in dogs.”
She continued, citing other instances of the agency funding cruel experiments on dogs, including one which involved allowing hundreds of ticks to suck on puppies alive. As Breitbart News reported at the time, “The experiment involves injecting beagle puppies with mutant bacteria and subsequently allowing ‘up to 250 ticks feast on each of the puppies, sucking their blood for up to a week,’” as detailed by the White Coat Waste project, which obtained the FOIA documents on the matter:
Previous reports have detailed NIAID-funded experiments in which dogs had their vocal cords cut out to prevent them from barking during drug tests, were infested with ticks, and were sedated and placed in cages with infectious sandflies in a lab in Tunisia.
Ultimately, Ernst is demanding details of the proposed tests, and requiring information as to whether any of the funding will be provided to labs in China.
“The FDA has stated dog testing is not mandated for human drugs. Did NIAID consult with the FDA to specifically discuss whether dog testing was required? Did NIAID propose the use of any alternatives to dog or other animal testing?” she added, requesting answers by June 16.
“On behalf of our 3 million supporters and the majority of taxpayers who oppose Fauci’s dog testing, we applaud Sen. Ernst for holding Dr. Fauci and his NIAID white coats accountable for #BeagleGate and demanding answers about his troubling plans to waste even more taxpayer dollars to abuse puppies in five cruel and unnecessary tests to evaluate a new drug to treat a runny nose,” White Coat Waste (WCW) senior Vice President Justin Goodman said in a statement.
In February, members of Congress began investigating claims of the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) spending millions of taxpayer dollars on an experiment involving injecting beagle puppies with cocaine.