December 23, 2021

For Immediate Release:
December 15, 2021

Tasgola Bruner 202-483-7382

Davis, Calif. – PETA has uncovered records revealing that experimenters at the University of California–Davis caused the deaths of a dozen monkeys—among other incidents—prompting the group to file a complaint this morning with the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) urging an investigation into apparent violations of the federal Animal Welfare Act.

The incidents include these: An infant rhesus macaque died after suffering from heat stress when a finger became trapped in a perch bar, and another monkey was euthanized after being operated on despite having experienced severe weight loss. Seven infant rhesus macaques died from anaphylaxis and sepsis after ingesting dye designated for use in adults. Three titi monkeys who received a canine distemper/measles vaccine had to euthanized, and dozens of others developed lameness, skin and eye inflammation or infection, and other symptoms.

“From the seven baby macaques poisoned to death to the dozens of tiny monkeys given a vaccine meant for another species, these records paint a picture of deadly incompetence at UC-Davis,” says PETA Senior Vice President Kathy Guillermo. “PETA is calling on authorities to investigate and take action against the university for its utter failure to care for animals adequately.”

The documents also reveal that workers moved the wrong rhesus macaque from the hospital to an outdoor enclosure, resulting in injuries from other animals that required veterinary treatment. In addition, workers failed to restrain a rabbit properly during a nail trim. The animal fell to the floor, sustaining a broken femur, and was subsequently killed.

UC-Davis used 1,428 primates and 206 rabbits and held an additional 3,607 primates in its facilities in 2020, according to the school’s annual report.

PETA—whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to experiment on”—opposes speciesism, a human-supremacist worldview. For more information, please visit or follow the group on Twitter, Facebook, or Instagram.