Animal rights activists have released shocking footage of monkeys, cats, and dogs being restrained to undergo toxicity tests in a German laboratory
Metro UK reported that the company is called Laboratory of Pharmacology and Toxicology (LPT) and it is located at Mienenbuttel, Lower Saxony.
The family-owned company conducts toxicity testing for pharmaceutical, industrial, and agrochemical companies around the world so that their products can meet safety requirements set by respective governments and regulatory authorities.
The secret footage was filmed by an activist when he worked undercover at the lab between December 2018 and March 2019
Two animal rights organisations, Soko Tierschutz and Cruelty Free International (CFI), posted videos and photos of the abuse on social media.
In a five-minute long video, monkeys were seen strapped and force-fed toxic liquid with a tube inserted deep into their throats.
Some scenes showed the monkeys were constrained in a row of metal harnesses, looking hysterical and scared.
A photo showed a cat being thrown into a black plastic bag, while the video also showed another had scabbed furs on its bleeding legs. The felines were said to have taken 13 injections per day by untrained professionals and left to suffer, reported The Sun UK.
Dogs were stuffed in tight pet carriers, lying in their own urine and blood, while dead dogs were hung upside down with a hook pieced through their legs.
The undercover activist said the staff are not trained animal carers and often treated the animal subjects violently
CFI claimed that the animals in the facilities were not given painkillers or anaesthetics, reported Mirror UK.
"The animals were even still waggling their tails when they were being taken to be killed, the dogs were desperate for human contact," said Friedrich Mullen from Soko Tierschutz.
"The worst treatment was kept for the monkeys. The macaques breed of monkeys are small, relatively light primates, which are often used for animal experiments at LPT.
"They are kept in cramped conditions in small cages. Many of the animals have developed compulsive tendencies and are seen going round in circles," added Mullen.
According to CFI, toxicity testing is a poisoning process conducted on animals to see how much chemicals or drugs they can sustain before serious health implications arise
It is an experiment to figure out what is the "safe" chemical dose for humans.
"Animals are injected with or made to eat or inhale increasing amounts of a substance to measure the toxic effects," the organisation said.
"Which can be severe and include vomiting, internal bleeding, respiratory distress, fever, weight loss, lethargy, skin problems, organ failure, and even death."
The laboratory was raided by local authorities days after the secret footage went viral
According to Daily Mail, authorities in the Harburg region ran a spot check on the facility and confirmed that some of the allegations made by the activists were true.
"We found the cages were far too small, just as the activists claimed," said a spokesman.
Lower Saxony State Office for Consumer Protection and Food Safety (LAVES), a local regulatory body, has filed charges for violations against animal protection laws with the Public Prosecutor in Luneburg.
"If these allegations prove to be true, they would have to be punished and quick consequences be put in place," said Minister for Agriculture Barbara Otte-Kinast, adding that the effort to revoke LPT's licence is being studied.
If the licence is revoked, the laboratory will be closed with immediate effect.
An online petition calling for the laboratory's closure has amassed over 80,000 signatures at the time of writing