Humane innovations in veterinary anatomy education in India


  • Kishore Puppala
  • Mahendra Tomar
  • Archana Kantepudi
  • Raju Nuthalapaty
  • Durga Prasad Dangeti
  • Anusha Panniru



Digitalized laboratories, embalming techniques, educational models, humane education, willed-body programme


Animal usage plays a central role in Veterinary Science
where millions of animals are used to train students. Teaching
Veterinary Anatomy involves sacrificing live animals and
embalming them for dissection. It is a highly controversial
issue unique to modern science though it lead to many scientific
breakthroughs. A major ethical controversy in this regard is that
it mostly involves pain, suffering and discomfort. Compassion
and respect for animals have to be an integral part of veterinary
education. Animal welfare encompasses both the physical and
psychological states of the animal. Humane Education was a
long felt valued need, and teaching objectives need to be met
using non-animal alternatives. This study proposes to phase out
sacrifice of animals for teaching, set up an ethically sourced
cadaver-donation programme, develop humane embalming
techniques, prepare humane non-animal alternatives and
digitalize laboratories to improve teaching-learning skills.
Willed-Body Programme as an alternative to healthy animal
sacrifice with dissections on ethically sourced donated cadavers
was established. Alternate modes for dissection and humane
experimental embalming techniques were conducted on
ethically sourced cadavers using different embalming fluids.
Cadaver storage in hazardous formalin was minimized by
using freezers. Innovative teakwood non-animal educational
models and video learning resources were prepared. Digitalized
gross anatomy & histology laboratories were established using
HDMI technology. An anatomy youtube channel was launched.
A national workshop as an outreach programme was organized
and feedback was obtained. Our studies showed that learning
outcomes generated through humane alternatives were as
effective as those achieved through traditional methods.






Research Article (peer review)