U.S. Representatives Brian Mast (FL-18) and Dina Titus (NV-01) today introduced the bipartisan Cat Abuse in Testing Stops (CATS) Act to permanently end cruel and unnecessary taxpayer-funded experiments on cats conducted by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs. Documents released by the VA – including disturbing photos and videos of the cat testing – show that tax dollars have been used to purchase cats and kittens, sever their spinal cords, implant electrodes into their brains, and perform other abusive and even deadly procedures.
“The VA’s continued use of taxpayer dollars to conduct painful and wasteful experiments on cats and kittens is unacceptable,” Rep. Mast said. “These tests are barbaric, unnecessary and do nothing to actually help veterans. That’s why I’m proud to introduce this legislation with Rep. Titus to bring them to an end once and for all.”
“The VA’s deadly and outdated cat experiments are sickening. You don’t have to be a cat owner like I am to recognize that,” Rep. Titus said. “I’m proud to introduce the CATS Act with Congressman Brian Mast, an Army veteran, to stop the VA’s cruel and unnecessary tests on cats so that these resources can be redirected to modern and humane research that will improve veterans’ lives.”
“We applaud Reps. Dina Titus (D-NV) and Brian Mast (R-FL) for introducing the CATS Act and their outstanding leadership to end the VA’s taxpayer-funded kitten catastrophe, which is opposed by most Americans and squanders precious VA money, space, staff, and time,” Justin Goodman, White Coat Waste Project Vice President of Advocacy and Public Policy, said.
The CATS Act builds on other efforts led by Reps. Mast and Titus to stop unnecessary and harmful animal testing at the VA, including the PUPPERS Act and a measure in the FY21 VA appropriations bill to defund VA dog testing. Additionally, the FY20 VA spending bill enacted last year restricted the VA’s testing on cats, dogs, and primates, as well as requested a phase-out plan for the use of these animals.
The legislation can be found here.