by Michael dEstries
Categories: Animals, Film/TV
Tags: .

Last week’s Grey’s Anatomy episode titled “Life During Wartime” addressed the issues and ethics involved in animal testing. As one Ecorazzi readers writes, she was pleased to see some animal advocacy played out amidst the sex, lies, and drama of the series. Check out her thoughts below:

Last week’s episode of Grey’s Anatomy started with a disclaimer about animals not being harmed during that episode — and being a vegan, it totally had my attention. Anyways, cut to a few scenes later and one of the attending doctors is hosting a skills workshop for the residents and interns using “live tissue”, aka pigs. The attending then goes on to stab the six pigs in the chest and tells the doctors to “practice their skills” by saving the pigs. Katherine Heigl’s character refuses and walks out of the workshop and for the remainder of the episodes voices her opinion about animal cruelty.

She has a few confrontations with the attending aka “the slaughterer” should not and don’t need to be used as guinea pigs…no pun intended. They never make mention of her character being or becoming vegan, however it makes me happy that clearly someone involved with the show (maybe the strong willed Heigl herself) definitely has a soft spot for animal rights and wanted to get the message out there. So through the drama, sex, lies and medicine came a little animal advocacy.

Thankfully the pigs were fake, and in the show they were saved, but sadly euthanized afterward.

To see the full episode, jump here. Thanks for the comment, Evalina!

About Michael dEstries

Michael has been blogging since 2005 on issues such as sustainability, renewable energy, philanthropy, and healthy living. He regularly contributes to a slew of publications, as well as consulting with companies looking to make an impact using the web and social media. He lives in Ithaca, NY with his family on an apple farm.

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  • Annie

    Katherine Heigl is definitely animal advocate. She is a big supporter of animal welfare – particularly rescue shelters and stuff.

  • Kelly

    I missed that episode! I’ll have to wait for the rerun.

  • Ali

    You don’t have to wait Kelly – you can watch it online at Just search for Grey’s Anatomy. I wrote about it on my blog Livin’ Veg. It was a great episode…

  • http://ecorazzi Nita

    Speaking of this cruelty, I have a question and need some suggestions. We have a chicken plant a couple of miles up the road. So chicken trucks travel by my house everyday.

    Well, one day one of the chickens fell off of thr truck. I ran out to get it thinking I would save it and keep it as a pet. When I got to the animal I started screamimg and crying. They had cut its leg on the inside in order to transfer the animal.

    Is this legal? And why do such a cruel thing?

  • Ali

    Hey Nita,

    I’m not sure if it’s legal or not, but I think the best people to contact to find out and help bring that chicken back to tip top health would be a farm animal sanctuary. Try They really are the experts.


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