RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — Fifty-three members of Congress have sent a letter the House Appropriations Committee urging them to cut federal taxpayer money for dog research at the VA from the 2019 spending bill.

The letter says there is bipartisan support to defund the “painful and unnecessary experiments on dogs at the VA.”  The letter also says over a dozen veterans organizations now support defunding the research.

The move comes after a series of 8News investigations exposing deadly dog testing at McGuire VA Hospital in Richmond.

Last July, the House unanimously adopted a measure sponsored by Virginia Congressman Dave Brad to defund the dog research for fiscal year 2018.

A bill to prohibit state taxpayer dollars for painful dog and cat research recently passed the General Assembly.

The VA says the experiments could lead to medical breakthroughs for veterans.

Opponents call it animal abuse.

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