Animal Testing Discursive Essay

Animal Testing

It is estimated that each year 26 million animals in the United States are used for animal testing. Animals are used to test scientific developments and commercial products. New medical treatments are tested on animals to verify the toxicity of new medications or the safety of a product that will be used on humans. The health care and commercial industries also turn to animal testing for these reasons.

While some contest the use of animals for animal testing it is not a new idea. Research tests conducted on living animals have been practiced since 500 BC. Nonetheless there are those who argue that the use of animals for testing is an inhumane and cruel practice. They argue that alternative methods should be developed to prohibit the need for animal testing. Many organizations such as PETA fight for increased research into alternative methods of testing so that testing on animals can be alleviated. They also argue that tests on animals will yield irrelevant results compared to humans and therefore there is no purpose in animal testing.

Conversely the use of animals is seen by many in the medical field as necessary. While it is not ideal to cause harm to animals it is a safer way to test new products compared to testing them on humans. Typical research and development will begin trials on rats. If those tests prove successful then another set of tests are conducted on monkeys. Once the tests are successful with monkeys then human testing begins. These tiered rounds of testing are used to reduce the amount of mistakes and negative side effects in all breakthroughs. It is argued that animal testing saves many lives and there is no alternative to testing on a living organism. In addition there are strict regulations for animal testing which prevent any mistreatment of the animals in question.

Overall the use of animals for research testing is an old concept and one that has historically been debated. Proponents claim that with regulations in place the animals are not intentionally harmed and that they are taken care of and treated as well as possible. They claim that there is no alternative and that the use of animal testing has saved many lives. And yet there are animal friendly organizations who claim that it is an unnecessary step to use animals for testing and it should be stopped due to its inhumane and cruel nature.

Animal experimentation - whether for medicinal advancement or cosmetics - is a hot topic right now, and one that is extremely difficult to tackle. It seems as though it is a necessary evil, but an evil nonetheless. Below are 11 of the best argumentative essay topics for this tough subject that will raise both your awareness and that of your readers.

  • Is it necessary to do medical tests on living creatures?
  • Modern medicine has come a long way, at the expense of the lives of creatures less lucky than us. Is this strictly necessary? Is there another way (or other ways) to achieve the same - or better - advancements?

  • Can we improve the lives of captive animals?
  • There are surely ways to improve the lives of the creatures that we experiment on. Can you think of any that are feasible and achievable? Remember that money will be a restriction, and that the experiments still need to continue.

  • Do cosmetics matter?
  • We have already established the sorts of chemicals that can be used in cosmetics. Do we need to continue testing new chemicals on living creatures? Is it a good use of resources?

  • Do animals have feelings?
  • If other creatures besides humans don’t actually feel anything, is it wrong to use them for chemical testing?

  • Why can we not test on humans or plants?
  • Why is animal experimentation necessary? Why can we not perform the same sorts of tests on humans or plants instead?

  • Think of some convincing alternatives to vivisection.
  • Vivisection is one of the ways in which we gather results and evidence for scientific and medical tests. Are there are any legitimate alternatives to consider?

  • How can we make vivisection less painful and/or stressful? Should we?
  • Life leading up to vivisection can be a very distressing experience. Are there ways to improve this?

  • What sort of animals should be used for experimentation and why?
  • Rabbits and rats are amongst the most popular creatures used in vivisection and other medical and/or cosmetic tests. Why is this? What should be used?

  • Do we have a responsibility to respect the creatures we test on?
  • What should scientists do, if anything, to respect the creatures that they are performing tests on?

  • Should we never take medicine if we want to save animals from experiments?
  • It can be considered hypocritical to take medicine or have operations if we disagree with vivisection and other tests performed on living creatures.

  • Is it ‘right’ to perform tests on other living creatures for our own gains?
  • What does it mean to be ‘right’? Do we have the right to kill other creatures just to extend our own lives?


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