Combine two hot button subjects like cruelty to animals and technology and you are bound to get people riled up with opinions. Hence the Frog-O-Sphere Ecosystem we wrote about sometime ago – till this day, that post is still getting people fired up. At the time we thought it was just a fun post on an aquatic system. Well here is a new scandal to talk about – news broke out last week that Taser International was funding a study that had sheep being fed Methampetamines and then tasered. The purpose of the study is to help determine if and when law enforcement use Tasers on suspects, will it lead to cardiac arrest for those suspects high on meth. Another motive for the study probably also stems from recent lawsuits involving deaths caused by Taser guns.
So what does Taser do in order to research this? They subject innocent sheep to torture by not only having them tasered, but also pumped with drugs. We have seen the videos that Taser has put up on YouTube testing their products on real people – so we ask, why not continue with that method? Granted, Taser could possibly be sued or accused of attempted murder if someone dies from that kind of experimenting – but at-least those being tested would be tested with their own free will. Instead Taser International is experimenting on some poor animals that can’t speak up for themselves.
In the end, the experiment found that smaller sheep who where given meth and tasered, experienced exacerbated heart symptoms, but did not experience any life-threatening heart rhythms that could lead to a cardiac arrest.
“Animals given methamphetamine demonstrated signs of methamphetamine toxicity with tachycardia, hypertension, and atrial and ventricular ectopy in the 30-minute period immediately after administration of the drug. Smaller animals (n = 8, ≤ 32 kg, mean = 29.4 kg) had supraventricular dysrhythmias immediately after the ECD exposures. Larger animals (n = 8, > 68 kg, mean = 72.4) had only sinus tachycardia after the exposures. One of the smaller animals had frequent episodes of ventricular ectopy after two exposures, including runs of delayed onset, nonsustained six- to eight-beat unifocal and multifocal ventricular tachycardia that spontaneously resolved. This animal had significant ectopy prior to the exposures as well. Thoracotomy performed on three smaller animals demonstrated cardiac capture during ECD exposure consistent with previous animal studies. In the larger animals, none of the methamphetamine-intoxicated animals demonstrated cardiac capture. Two control sheep showed evidence of capture similar to the smaller animals. No ventricular fibrillation occurred after the exposure in any animal.”
Not surprisingly, Donald M. Dawes, MD and Jeffrey D. Ho; who are both Taser medical consultants and stockholders of Taser International, where participants in the study involving the sheep. So an independent study it was not. Obviously animal testing is still a wide practice that is used for many scientific studies and many see it as a justifiable resource when conducting tests for stem cell research, breast cancer, or any other health related research – but torturing animals for a helpful, but ultimately non essential gadget– just doesn’t sit right with us.
PETA seems to agree with this sentiment, they have already jumped on the bandwagon and have filed a complaint with the U.S. Department of Agriculture calling for an immediate investigation. But sadly this isn’t the first time that Taser has come under attack. Back in 2006 they were blasted for forcing 150 taser discharges on various body locations of 6 pigs. One thing is for sure – no matter how female friendly their product designs and concepts are for their Tasers – we won’t be covering their products anymore.