A Decade of Despair: Urge UW-Madison to Free Cornelius

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This is Cornelius:

He’s a rhesus macaque who was born in a barren laboratory at the Wisconsin National Primate Research Center (WNPRC) on the University of Wisconsin–Madison’s campus. He’s been trapped there ever since—for over a decade.

Like most monkeys born in laboratories, Cornelius was taken from his mother when he was just an infant, as his mother was so distressed that she couldn’t even care for him. Instead of a real mother, he was given an object—perhaps a piece of fleece wrapped around a block of wood—to cling to for comfort.

As a baby, he suffered from a rash that covered his body. As a juvenile, he was plagued by persistent diarrhea—a sign of stress in monkeys in laboratories. He’s struggled to keep weight on, and experimenters have observed bald patches all over his body, likely from tearing out his own hair.

And on multiple occasions in 2019 and 2020, experimenters strapped Cornelius into a restraint chair and painfully electroshocked his penis until he ejaculated so that they could use him to breed more monkeys for cruel experiments.

In nature, rhesus macaques are highly social and live in troops of up to 200 individuals, but Cornelius has spent the last six years of his life caged mostly alone at the WNPRC. PETA’s undercover investigator observed that he sat hunched over or with his face pressed against the cage bars, apparently having lost his will to live.

Cornelius shouldn’t have to spend one more minute in a barren laboratory. Tell UW-Madison to release him to a reputable sanctuary where he can live the rest of his days free of frustration, dread, and despair!

University of Wisconsin-Madison

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