National Anti-vivisection Society

 

National Antivisection Society

Interfauna beagles tracked to Sweden

Posted: 22 January 2013. Updated: 22 January 2013

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Just months before six beagle puppies were saved by NAVS from Interfauna in 1994 (see here for details), our Special Investigations Department tracked two flights of beagles to Sweden for experimentation.

The dogs left Interfauna’s Cambell Farm site in the early morning and were driven to Stansted Airport in two anonymous vans. They were loaded onto a charter aircraft belonging to the carrier Titan. During our beagle rescue, Interfauna’s manager Bob Coley had repeatedly expressed a fear of anti-vivisectionists getting wind of his activities and this secretiveness was displayed at Stansted. The Interfauna vans were backed right up to the aircraft and the dogs loaded, completely concealed from any passers-by.

From Stansted it was a three and a half hour flight to Gothenburg in Sweden on board a small, twin engined, unpressurised aircraft, a Shorts 360. We are all used to the luxury of pressurised airline flight, rather than bumping through the turbulence in a small unpressurised aircraft. The six pups rescued from Interfauna had never travelled before in their lives and were all prone to travel sickness before they acclimatised. For the pups being flown to Sweden, it must have been a frightening and bewildering experience.

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An NAVS investigator who had worked undercover inside the SmithKline Beecham laboratories recalled the state beagles were in when they were delivered to the lab: "One day when I was working at Stock, a delivery of beagles arrived and I helped to unload and carry them to their pens. The dogs had travelled in the back of a van packed two to a crate and were terrified after their ordeal, most were foaming at the mouth and one had vomited during the journey".

Liaising with Swedish anti-vivisectionists, another NAVS team had gone ahead to monitor the dogs’ arrival. At Landvetter Airport, Gothenburg, the dogs were unloaded in their crates and stacked on luggage trolleys. From these, the dogs were loaded onto another van, which the NAVS team followed to the laboratories of Astra AB in Hassle.

Sweden’s Freedom of Information Act has enabled colleagues in Sweden to access import documents from the National Board of Agriculture, revealing a regular trade from UK dog suppliers to Swedish labs.

© National Anti-Vivisection Society