Virginia - SB28

Medical research on dogs and cats; prohibition on use of state funds, civil penalty.


November 20, 2017


Virginia Senate Bill 28 is a short, but devastating bill that would defund any private or public research that involves cats and dogs and is either “medically unnecessary” or causes “significant pain or distress.” “Medically unnecessary” is defined as “not carried out solely for the better health, welfare, or safety of the animal subject.” This vague definition appears to mean that if it does not directly benefit this single animal it cannot be conducted, which makes little sense in relation to how reliable research is conducted and lacks the statistical power to be valuable or validated by the regulatory agencies for application to others.

Any research that falls under these two vague definitions cannot receive any state funding. With definitions this vague and overbroad, it is hard to pinpoint precisely what research would fall under the purview of this bill. Violations of this potential law will result in fines of up to $50,000 per incident.

SB 28 would stop potentially life-saving research that involves cats and dogs. It’s also a dangerous attempt by the animal rights movement to end any and all use of animals in research. 

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