Canterbury: Local Dog And Cat Guardians Protest Iams Lab Tests

Compassionate Consumers Howling Mad Over Deaths in Pet-Food Tests

For Immediate Release:
18 February 2005

Yvonne Taylor 020 7357 9229, ext. 405

Canterbury — Holding placards that read, “Boycott Iams”, and, “Stop Cruel Animal Tests”, local dog and cat guardians will gather today to protest cat- and dog-food company Iams and distribute leaflets to supermarket shoppers as part of a February blitz. The protesters are hoping to persuade people to leave Iams dog and cat food on the shelves until the company stops cruel tests on animals in laboratories:

Date:  Saturday, 19 February
Time:  2-3 PM
Place: Tesco Metro, 4 St. Georges St (opposite Barclays Bank)

A PETA undercover investigation in the US revealed highly abusive conditions at an Iams contract laboratory. At least 27 dogs were killed, while others died of illnesses that went untreated, despite assurances from Iams that no animal in any Iams test would ever be deliberately killed. PETA’s investigator also found dogs and cats confined to small, barren cages, some for up to six years; dogs who were silenced by having their vocal cords cut out; workers’ reports of a live kitten who had been washed down a drain and dogs force-fed vegetable oil through tubes inserted down their throats. Iams still brazenly conducts laboratory experiments on animals – despite the fact that these tests are not necessary or required by any law.

Feeling intense pressure over its use of contract laboratories to test its dog and cat foods, Iams recently announced that it will pull out of all contract and university facilities by October 2006. But the company plans to double the size of its own laboratory in the US, creating an impenetrable “Fort Knox” where it can experiment on animals behind locked doors.

Throughout February, campaigners will alert shoppers to Iams cruelty at Sainsbury’s Local and Tesco Metro stores around the UK. Even though they are aware of the distressing findings of PETA’s investigation and Iams’ refusal to stop caging cats and dogs for cruel and unnecessary experiments, both Sainsbury’s and Tesco are actively promoting Iams to their customers – even going so far as to offer free promotional bags of Iams dog and cat food. As well as telling shoppers the shocking truth about Iams, campaigners will also hand out lists of companies that produce dog and cat food without conducting laboratory experiments on animals.

PETA’s campaign against Iams has already garnered high-profile support from celebrities such as Morrissey and Chrissie Hynde.

“Many people buy Iams products because they care about their own animal companions, never dreaming that their purchases help fund the abuse of innocent dogs and cats in laboratories”, says PETA Director Dawn Carr. “If people knew about the misery that goes into Iams food, they’d leave it on the shelf.”

Broadcast-quality footage of animals in an Iams contract laboratory is available. For more information, please visit PETA’s Web site