National Anti-vivisection Society


National Antivisection Society

Would you pay to have this rabbit's leg broken?

. Updated: 2 May 2012


Most people wouldn’t dream of paying someone to break a rabbit’s leg. Yet public donations are used by charities to fund experiments in which animals have cancers grown on their backs, have limbs broken, and are left crippled. Read on and find out how YOUR money is being spent.

Good science without animal suffering

It is a myth that animals are indispensable to the progress of medical research. History is full of examples of medical progress without animal research.

Furthermore, modern research techniques are superior to animal experiments, and can be applied directly to human conditions.

You can donate with a clear conscience and help lifesaving medical progress.

The Lord Dowding Fund for Humane Research

The Lord Dowding Fund was founded as a department of the National Anti-Vivisection Society to support and fund methods of scientific and medical research for testing products and curing disease without the use of animals.

To date, the Fund has awarded grants approaching 2 million to researchers working in a wide range of fields including microsurgery, toxicity testing of dental fillings, breast and lung cancer, Parkinson’s disease, cot deaths, and kidney research.

The Fund is not alone, the Good Charities Guide lists over eighty bodies in different fields committed to medical progress, which do not fund animal experiments.

(Due to its status as a department of the NAVS, the Lord Dowding Fund is not charity registered).

The Good Charities Guide

The NAVS Good Charities Guide lists charities according to whether they fund animal experiments or not. The good news is that there are almost twice as many charities which do not fund animal experiments, as those which DO. The bad news is that some of the largest charities in the UK are funding shocking animal experiments.

Animal experiments: not necessary

Animals are not like us, they suffer from different diseases, and the artificial ‘models’ of disease created in laboratories are not the same as real disease, in the real world. Also, each species responds differently to substances, so animal tests are unreliable as a way of predicting effects in people. Scientific and medical research can be conducted by utilising new highly sophisticated, modern, non-animal research techniques. Research methods that are directly applicable to people.

Please don’t contribute to animal suffering.


Many people would like to donate to medical care and research charities, but do not want their money to be used to fund animal experiments.

Charities that fund animal experiments often claim that there is no alternative. This is not the case. There are sophisticated non-animal techniques now available and, after all, much progress has not involved animals anyway.

The NAVS Good Charities Guide lists almost twice as many medical research and care charities which do not fund animal experiments as those which do. So you can make a choice.

The Imperial Cancer Research Fund, which often defends animal research, has conceded that only 4% of their research spend involves animals, and half of this figure is spent on animal housing and husbandry, not on the research itself. So it is possible to donate with a clear conscience and see real medical and scientific progress.

After all, we all have a stake in seeing medical progress, but that doesn’t mean we support animal experiments.


Let’s not forget medical progress without animal experiments

Anaesthetics - introduction of chloroform, ether, nitrous oxide, and cocaine.

Asepsis - understanding of sterile techniques in surgery. Blood - understanding of the blood groups and Rhesus factor.

Circulation - understanding of how the blood circulates around the body.

Drugs - introduction of beta blockers for blood pressure; digitalis for heart failure; morphine as a pain killer; nitrite drugs for angina; quinine for malaria.

Epidemiology - discovery of the link between cancer and smoking; the causes of heart disease; and the causes of many other diseases.

Hormones - identification and purification of insulin for diabetes.

Surgical procedures - removal of the appendix; removal of bladder stones; Brock’s technique for blue baby surgery and mitral stenosis; repair of cardiac aneurysm; removal of cataracts; removal of gall stones; repair of inguinal hernia; removal of the ovaries for tumours.

Giving with a clear conscience

Few charities that fund animal experiments advertise the fact when they are asking for donations.

Giving with a clear conscience means knowing about who you are giving to. We recommend that you only give to the bodies which DO NOT fund animal research.

There are over 80 such organisations listed in the Good Charities Guide, here are a few:-

Anthony Nolan Bone Marrow Trust
British National Lymphoma Investigation
Dr Hadwen Trust
Humane Research Trust
Lord Dowding Fund
Macmillan Cancer Relief
Migraine Action
Pain Relief Foundation
Quest Cancer Test
Royal National Institute for the Blind

Leading charities that fund animal experiments

Action Research
Arthritis Research Campaign
Brain Research Trust
British Heart Foundation
British Liver Trust
British Lung Foundation
Cancer Research Campaign
Cystic Fibrosis Trust
Diabetes UK
Imperial Cancer Research Fund
Migraine Trust
Multiple Sclerosis Society
Muscular Dystrophy Group
National Kidney Research Fund
Parkinson’s Disease Society of the UK
Research into Ageing
Wellcome Trust
Wishbone Trust
World Cancer Research Fund

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