Photos: PETA ‘Mice’ Encircle Home Office Over Forced Swim Test

Photos: PETA ‘Mice’ Encircle Home Office Over Forced Swim Test

London – Today, a mischief of PETA supporters wearing white dust suits and striking mouse  and rat masks scurried to the Home Office, which is responsible for regulating animal experiments, demanding that the government do the right thing and develop a policy that prevents the licensing  of the widely discredited and abysmally cruel forced swim test as part of its upcoming review.

Images are available here.

In this test, experimenters induce panic in vulnerable small animals, who are put into inescapable cylinders of water and made to swim, terrified they will drown. They attempt to climb the steep sides of the container and even dive underwater to look for an escape. The test is done under the erroneous assumption it can reveal something about mental health conditions in humans. Once it’s complete, experimenters kill the animals – either by gassing, blunt force trauma to the head, an overdose of anaesthetic, or breaking their necks – to study their brains.

“Every time a licence is granted to terrorise rats and mice in forced swim tests, it’s a missed opportunity to direct resources to scientifically valid, non-animal research  into human mental health conditions,” says PETA Senior Campaigns Manager Kate Werner. “PETA is calling on the Home Office to stop backing this sham science and develop a policy that prevents licensing any use of this experiment.”

PETA – whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to experiment on” – opposes speciesism, a human-supremacist worldview. For more information, please visit or follow the group on Twitter, Facebook, TikTok, or Instagram.


Jennifer White +44 (0) 20 7837 6327; [email protected]