During an August 19 visit, a U.S. Department of Agriculture inspector counted 114 sheep inside the Pearlman Biomedical Research Institute at Mount Sinai Medical Center in Miami Beach. (The two-story, nondescript building at the north end of the medical center complex can be seen from the Julia Tuttle Causeway.)

Sheep are used at Mount Sinai in studying asthma and other lung diseases. A 2012 study was typical of the research. A group of sheep were restrained in a “modified shopping cart,” with their heads immobilized. A tube was inserted into the nostril and a nebulizer used to deliver a toxin into the lungs.

Research using sheep has been going on at Mount Sinai Medical Center since at least 1982. In 2003 the Sun Sentinel published an article in which former employees told horrible stories of animal mistreatment, including sheep left unattended in shopping carts that sometimes fell over (leaving one sheep with broken legs), another sheep found dead with her neck caught in cage bars, and sheep killed by malfunctioning nebulizers.

Sheep are intelligent animals who experience fear, boredom and despair. We’re certain that sheep would rather be anywhere else than stuck inside a building in Miami Beach.

Photo: Farm Sanctuary