Orange cat in research facility kennel, likely to avoid euthanasia now after Gov. Whitmer signs Michigan bill protecting cats and dogs.
(Photo Credit: DanBrandenburg | Getty Images)

Gov. Whitmer Bans Cat, Dog Euthanasia in Research Labs

A big win has arrived for animal rights supporters in Michigan. On Dec. 13, Gov. Gretchen Whitmer signed bills banning the euthanasia of cats and dogs in research labs, as per Fox 17 News

Years ago, the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) uploaded a video showcasing a dozen Beagles forcibly made to ingest chemicals. The research facility had to release the dogs later on. 

However, the incident sparked a fire. Activists welcomed the conclusion of their battle as Gov. Whitmer signed the bill. In so doing, the state’s top elected leader was ensuring the empathetic treatment of cats and dogs in research labs. 

Senate bills 148 and 149 are called ‘Teddy’s Law’

According to “Teddy’s Law” or the recently signed Senate Bills 148 and 149, research facilities and dealers will need to follow certain rules. These include:

  • After completing research using cats and dogs, the animals should be sent to shelters instead of euthanized.
  • The parties involved can sign written agreements that waive shelters’ and adoptive pet parents’ accountability for medical and behavioral problems in the animals. 
  • Penalty or fines will be imposed upon breach of the above conditions.
  • Research facilities must file annual reports revealing the number of dogs and cats sent to shelters in the preceding year.

Moreover, penalties for first-time violations of Teddy’s Law vary from $1,000 to $10,000, depending upon the number of affected animals.

HSUS Director Blake Goodman said, “It’s going to save hundreds of animal lives every year.”

According to HSUS, the name Teddy in “Teddy’s Law” belongs to a special Beagle. The dog was about to undergo euthanasia after spending a year in a pesticide testing research facility. Subsequently, he was among the many Beagles who were rescued from the facility. 

Goodman stated, “For us, euthanasia always should have been a last resort that never should have been relied on.” 

Furthermore, he added that these pets are really loving, and all they need is a chance to show that. In his words, “When you show a dog or cat care, love, and a steady home, they change.” Continuing, he said, “They become the pet someone always dreamed of having, a true companion.”

Editor’s Note: This article has been cross-posted on our companion site,, as “Gov. Whitmer Bans Dog, Cat Euthanasia in Research Labs.”

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