I Think I Like This Representative

Republican Representative Mike Bishop of Maine is sponsoring a bill that would end cruel and needless experiments on kittens and cats, then euthanizing and bagging them as if they’re trash for incineration. The USDA’s latest revealed experiments, if you look up Representative Bishop or the KITTEN Bill, involve feeding kittens toxoplasmosis infected feces in their food for 2-3 weeks, then, once feces is examined, euthanizing and incinerating.

The point is to develop a vaccine against toxoplasmosis, generally an infection that can be serious for pregnant women and AIDS patients. Why develop this vaccine?

While I’m normally in the pro vaccine camp, there are natural ways to prevent the spread of this parasite, particularly if immune suppressed or pregnant. Not eating un or undercooked meat and thorough washing of hands after handling it helps, as does not consuming unwashed fruit.

If pregnant, the first prenatal exam that doctor will ask “have you a cat” and most likely ask for a blood test looking for Toxoplasma gondii. Thorough hand washing after cleaning the cat box and wearing a mask during this time is also a preventive.

In healthy individuals, toxoplasma, if presenting symptoms, is generally mild, but in the other groups is where it causes serious complications, and there are preventive measures to take if fitting this description. Animals, IMO, are being subjected to needless cruelty and killing for a vaccine that’s largely unnecessary.

According to another source, Rep Bishop is also wanting an accountability of the V A’s inhumane use of dogs in experiments. I love this man and the work he’s doing on behalf of the animals.


If it were a different disease, with a different transmission method, would you be as supportive of this bill? I am deeply suspicious of politicians who try to micro manage technical work.

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@toreyj01 What is your take on this? I always appreciate your medical knowledge and insight on these issues.

Experiments should not be performed on cute animals, Only on creepy yecky ones.

I believe there’s strong evidence of at least a correlation between toxoplasmosis and schizophrenia, and possibly other mental disorders.

That’s one theory behind why the “crazy cat lady” thing emerged. Cats may legitimately be making some people very, very ill.

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I’m not a supporter of inhumane ,unnecessary research. If it was humane, I wouldn’t have started the thread.

For example, there are other ways to generate toxoplasmosis, other hosts, like raw meat, and this is a disease that primarily is crippling to two groups of people. Most of us it doesn’t have grave consequences www.mayoclinic.org is a good source for this parasite.

So yes, if it was a different disease, with different modes of transmission, and it involved inhumane research on cats or whatever, yes, I would support Representative Bishop in this cause.

Cats? Or failure to engage in proper handwashing procedures after cleaning the litter?

Or, in the actual examples of “crazy cat ladies”, is it hoarding so many cats it’s an unreasonable number, making clean up not so easy?

Most people with one or more cats don’t get gravely ill from them.

Glad to see other posters caring about humane treatment of animals. As we advance, the less we should rely on barbaric animal testing methods.

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Cats, not just poor hygeine. You can get exosed many ways, and there’s no cure.

Chicken and the egg there. There’s some suggestion that exposure to toxoplasmosis may make you more of a cat person per se, and drawn to owning more cats. Wouldn’t be the first parasite to drastically alter behaviour

Around 20% of the US population is infected with the parasite. This isn’t a small phenomenon.

I disagree. Feral cats are an ecological menace. IMHO, this is a good way to do useful research, and get rid of feral cats. Better than just killing and burying the cats.

And for most of those individuals, per a search on toxoplasmosis & checking the cdc’s website, “very few have symptoms because the immune system usually keeps the parasite from causing illness”. It is for those whose immune systems are compromised by pregnancy, immuno infection and chemotherapy it can have dire consequences.

If a vaccine is to be developed, should there not be more humane means of testing it, as unwashed meat, particularly venison and pork, are carriers?

These aren’t feral cats, but kittens specifically bred for laboratory research. Per one source, the kittens are being killed BY incineration.

What sort of sick freak takes a job and consents to THAT as a duty? This isn’t dry ice or lethal injection, but burning a living being alive, if that source is credible.

Reminds me of Volkswagen’s use of monkeys to test diesel fuel, or a study I heard of years ago that involved restraining monkeys for repeated blows to the head to test, what…?

Red green color blindness, a visual quirk in some individuals that causes relatively little problems in life. Now, if everything from visual problems to a parasitic infection are to involve animal research, shouldn’t it be humane?

My avatar is very relieved.

Hope the bill goes somewhere.


20% is still a minority, and a majority of U S taxpayers do not support the research.

May I ask what transmission of toxoplasma is in the U K? Do British keep cats as pets, or are they not as fond of them as some here in the U S?

The running of V A Hospitals in shambles.

The U S D A, which is supposed to be in charge of laws against cruelty to farm animals as well as those used for medical research, clearly isn’t doing its job here. One spokeswoman wouldn’t even answer “yes” or “no” as to whether the kittens are killed by incineration. That this research is even conducted deviates from the will the majority of taxpayers.

The scary part of this is there are people who don’t mind more federal government encroachment in their lives, for example, the “Affordable” Care Act.:scream:

Then they should use feral cats.

But they are too challenging to herd. Have you ever tried herding cats? Let alone, feral ones? :smirk:

Haven’t tried to herd cats, but I have been a substitute coach for u-5 soccer.

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Very similar my friend. Except the U-5’s can kind-of, sort-of stay within the boundaries. :wink: