The Department of Agriculture's Animal Plant and Health Inspection Service says in an annual summary 792,168 animals were used for research, testing, teaching, experimentation, and/or surgery in fiscal 2017. The number is down 28,644 from last year’s summary. Those animals included cats, dogs, guinea pigs, hamsters, primates, pigs, rabbits, sheep, and various "other covered species." The APHIS Animal Care program reviews the data to ensure the calculated totals are consistent with the number of reported animals in each pain or distress category associated with animal use. Each facility must submit an annual report (APHIS Form 7023) to APHIS before or on December 1 to comply with the Animal Welfare Act. APHIS has not made changes to the summary reports but updated the explanation of the annual report data to show how data are collected, what reviews occur, and potential irregularities in reported numbers. The update was done in response to the Government Accountability Office’s (GAO) May 2018 audit report. USDA has publicly shared summarized reports of the data along with copies of the annual reports for the past 19 years.
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