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PETA Calls For Police Investigation After Monkey Dies in Unattended, Hot Van at UC-Davis

For Immediate Release:
September 19, 2023

Tasgola Bruner 202-483-7382

Davis, Calif. – Please see the following statement from PETA Vice President Dr. Alka Chandna regarding the death of a monkey who was left caged and unattended in a sweltering van by University of California–Davis staffers:

Obscenely incompetent staff at the University of California–Davis killed a monkey by leaving her to roast inside a closed van with a heater blasting 130-degree air directly into her steel cage for up to 90 minutes. PETA is strongly urging the Yolo County Sheriff’s Office to investigate this apparent violation of California’s law against cruelty to animals, which includes provisions against leaving an animal in a hot vehicle.

According to an external review of the incident obtained by PETA, on May 12 university staff took two monkeys from the California National Primate Research Center to a secondary facility for an experiment. Staff took one monkey inside but left the second, a female rhesus macaque, in a stainless-steel cage in the van. Despite mild temperatures, staff turned on a heater in the van, blowing hot air into the cage below. Staff then abandoned the van and the monkey for up to 90 minutes as the temperature climbed to 110 degrees.

UC-Davis should redirect its resources toward modern, non-animal research methods that don’t kill animals and will actually help humans, and we urge officials there to adopt PETA’s Research Modernization Deal.

For more information on PETA’s investigative newsgathering and reporting, please visit, listen to The PETA Podcast, or follow the group on X (formerly Twitter), Facebook, or Instagram.

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