Tampa company creates synthetic dog to eliminate use of shelter animals in vet training

The company is raising money to try and give synthetic dogs to every accredited veterinary medicine program in the world.

TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) - A Tampa company says it has created a synthetic dog with the hope of preventing shelter animals from being used in veterinary training.

The "creation" will lead to "thousands of animals being saved," SynDaver Labs claims.

SynDaver already manufactures synthetic humans.

The synthetic canine comes with a fundraising campaign. The company wants $24 million to give 20 synthetic dogs to every accredited veterinary medicine college in the world. It says the schools will receive the canines for free.

Currently, according to SynDaver, vet students learn surgical skills by practicing on live shelter animals. The animals are then euthanized after the labs. SynDaver says it wants to eliminate that need.

"The campaign will begin to end a process known as terminal surgery labs," SynDaver explains. "The product will immediately end the need for terminal surgery labs in veterinary medical schools and represents the beginning of the end of animal testing in general."

The company worked with the University of Florida's College of Veterinary Medicine to develop the canine. If more than $24 million is raised, SynDaver says it will start creating a synthetic cat, followed by a horse and cow.

This synthetic canine is detailed and realistic so it will give veterinary students a platform to practice surgery, SynDaver says. "The canine utilizes SynDaver's patented SynTissue, which mimics living tissue, includes a full list of functioning bodily systems, and has the capability to simulate customized diseases, illnesses and medical complications," the company explains.

The dog has a heartbeat and circulatory system, and bleeds when cuts are made.

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