Animals being mistreated
at the University of Guadalajara, Mexico
A YouTube video showing scenes of animals being mistreated at the University of Guadalajara (UDG)
has sparked a protest campaign by local animal rights’ activists.
Activists say dozens of street dogs are picked up every week, loaded into a van and taken to the university’s medical school (CUCS) to be used for student instruction. Once there, they are left in the sun without water or food for up to six hours, according to activists, who say they are then operated upon sometimes without the appropriate amount of anesthetic.
“When a dog is howling in pain, they give it a whack with a stick so that it shuts up to let the medical students work,” one animal rights’ group claims.
The activists have started a campaign to try and persuade the rector of CUCS, Hector Raul Perez, to end the practice. Those in favor are being asked to write to the rector at email@example.com.
Perez has denied that the animals are mistreated and defended his institution’s record on the treatment of animals.
“It’s a lie. Definitely not correct,” said Perez. “We are very devoted to the animals we use and treat them in accordance with the public legislation, both national and international.”
Responded local animal rights’ activist Elsa Stettner: “They are obtained in a clandestine way, brought in by dog catchers mainly from El Salto, Tonala and Tlajomulco.”
While carrying out surgery on live dogs for educational purposes is legal in Mexico, activists point to NOM-042, which says that animals rescued from the street shouldn’t be given to any organization or person that isn’t the owner of the animal.
It appears that the YouTube video was filmed by someone who worked in the CUCS and witnessed certain events. “It seems it was an employee,” said Perez. “To me it’s outrageous that someone made this.”
The crux of Perez’s complaint is that the video was put together by someone who was already opposed to the practice of using animals to teach students how to operate. Perez said the person took dead animals that were ready to be taken away out of their bags and spread them out on the grass in front of the CUCS and then made the video.
“For me it’s incomprehensible that the CUCS authorities are insisting on covering this up,” Stettner told the Guadalajara Reporter. “They are trying to block out the sun using their thumb thinking they can win the trust, sympathy and help of the people.”
Perez said he respects the rights of the protesters.
The video causing the scandal is entitled “MALTRATO, ABUSO INVESTIGAN CON PERROS UNIVERSIDAD DE GUADALAJARA AYUDANOS!!” and can be seen above.