Another Win Against Experiments on Animals: University of Western Australia Stops Using the Forced Swim Test

Posted on by PETA Australia

After hearing from PETA and PETA US as well as Animal-Free Science Advocacy, the University of Western Australia confirmed that it has ended its use of the widely discredited and cruel forced swim test.

The university had published papers describing experiments using the forced swim test as recently as November. In the tests, experimenters drop rats, mice, or other small animals, who may or may not have been dosed with a test substance, into inescapable beakers filled with water, forcing them to swim to keep from drowning. The test has been used to try to determine the effectiveness of antidepressant medications but has been shown to be inaccurate.

This decision comes after over 25,000 PETA supporters wrote to the university urging it to drop the test. In a letter to PETA regarding the ban, a university representative confirmed that “UWA no longer conducts any active projects that make use of the forced swim test”.

Recently, the National Health and Medical Research Council changed its policy on funding the test after hearing from PETA, PETA US, Animal-Free Science Advocacy, and their supporters.

Forcing desperate animals to swim is cruel and unscientific. Now, the University of Western Australia joins many other universities and pharmaceutical companies by ending its use of the horrible test, and PETA is calling on other Australian universities as well as Victoria University of Wellington in New Zealand to follow suit.