The Magnificent Seven

HarperIt all started with a group of young chimpanzees that were brought to Ohio State University to interact with humans, learn sign language, play, paint and use a computer. They were extremely loved and well taken care of. When the research funds dried up, the chimps were sent to Primarily Primates Inc.

According to activists, at PPI, the chimps were neglected, did not have adequate food and veterinary care and were living in substandard conditions (There were originally 9 chimps, but 2 died at PPI). Legal proceedings were brought against PPI and in the midst of this, the 7 chimps (known as the Magnificent Seven) were brought to Chimp Haven in Louisiana where they are now getting the care and attention they deserve.

Now, the attorney general is pledging to move the Magnificent Seven back to PPI — and for the chimps, this means bringing them back to the place that caused them fear and anxiety says PETA. Here is more information about the Magnificent Seven and how you can help.

(Thanks SmilingDogRescue)

5 Responses to “The Magnificent Seven”

  1. joel says:

    You may want to investigate this further before coming to an opinion about it.
    This has been an extremely controversial topic, and not everyone is enamored with Chimp Haven. Personally, I’m not sure where I fall, but I thought it was important to get another side of this story.

    Friends of Animals: Chimp Haven
    Chimp Haven part 2

  2. SmileOnADog says:

    (Right off the bat, this is long.)

    The organization Friends of Animals is really Friends Of Wally Swett. Doesn’t surprise me to read that they have issues with Chimp Haven.

    After reading the link above (thanks for the link, Joel!) it just smacks, to me, of bull****. Legally, the Mag 7 couldn’t just be whisked away to Chimp Haven as Friends of Animals suggests. Friends of Animals also speaks in sweeping generalizations, while PETA’s covering of PPI and the Mag 7 issue gives exact names and events regarding people involved and the legalities. Same goes for Chimp Haven. Hard evidence sits better with me than sweeping generalizations.

    Thank God for the whistleblowers at PPI, the people working there and witnesses to the horror.

    Friends of Animals uses the term, in reference to PPI, “build it up”, which really attests to the horror and shambles the place was in until the courts stepped in. PPI didn’t turn it around on their own (voluntarily) but needed the threat of legal action and prosecution. The welfare, security and happiness of the animals under their care wasn’t a motivating factor.

    IMHO, for the perpetrators now to say the horror of the place (there were workers’ reports and whistleblowers of PPI from before the court actions) isn’t because of Wally Swett and Friends of Animals perpetrating, perpetuating and condoning it, but is INSTEAD a result of the people who stepped in to PPI for the sake of the Mag 7, the air force chimps retired there (they’ve been dying off, too, at PPI) all the other chimps and ALL the animals, sounds to me just like any other abuser of animals and people — everything is everyone else’s fault but theirs, and they don’t see nor care about the consequences of their actions nor how they impact others, animal OR human.

    Wally Swett, in charge when the place was a dirty, disgusting hell hole is on court record as an addict. It doesn’t surprise me, considering. Really, there’s no room in such full blown addiction to care about oneself, let alone the animals.

    I know I’m passionate on this topic, but it’s not aimed at you, Joel. I rescue animals myself from abuse. I just found out about the Magnificent 7 last week, and their sad, heartbreaking circumstances. I only had to see their names, Keeli, Ivy, etc., and instantly I knew them from the documentary I’d seen on them a few years ago. Dumbfounded, and relieved of another chunk of naivete’, I read their present plight with tears streaming down my face. I can’t begin to imagine how those chimps felt, going from Ohio State University, where they were loved and raised as chimp children, not property, to PPI which is a hell on earth, by all accounts, photos, testimonies and the like. Essentially the chimps were betrayed, by both Ohio State University AND PPI. I for one can’t accept that.

    PPI has to say otherwise about the abuse and deplorable living conditions, in order not to lose the hell hole they inhabit and to stay out of prison. If they’re convicted of animal abuse, they won’t be able to have a “rescue” or “sanctuary”, (with the words rescue and sanctuary being used very, very loosely.)

    I love that at Chimp Haven, these chimps who grew up together at OSU, who were separated at PPI, are now living together as a little family again. They’re once again being treated not as property, not as animals to neglect, but as sentient beings who matter. Thank God for Chimp Haven.

    Also, anyone who believes PPI and/or their cohorts, Friend’s of Animals’ lies about the Mag 7 being used for research at Chimp Haven, only need email Chimp Haven and ask:

    I did.

    I’m not affiliated with these organizations, just to say. I’m just so worried about the Magnificent 7’s future. After you see the documentary on them at OSU, you’ll never forget them. They deserve a happy ending, and they deserve to be treated with respect.

    Even Jane Goodall stands behind the chimps not being taken from Chimp Haven, for another good reason. There’s a letter excerpt from Jane, second story down, on a blog dedicated to the Magnificent 7 (I’m hoping, as new at blogging, it’s okay to give a link to another blog? if not, pls do your stuff, Itchmo Admin. : ) Kermit was the name of one of the two OSU chimps who died while “property” of PPI.

    Please, anyone with a minute, please write or call whoever in charge you can (I will post later al the names I’ve found to contact) and protest the chimps’ being sent back to PPI. It only takes 20 minutes to read up on the stories if you follow the links provided here. Itchmo and Itchmo people have already made a difference concerning the pet food recall on so many levels, and we can also make a difference with the Magnificent 7.

    Also, IMHO, no matter what “side” one’s on, the basic truth is that the stress and length of the trip, in being shipped back *anywhere* can be life-threatening for chimpanzees. Two are already dead, one as a result of the original shipping. If the Magnificent 7 chimps are safe and content where they are, then for the reality of the shipping factor alone, they should remain where they are. That they are very loved and welcome at Chimp Haven is the icing on the cake. Good for them. There are still so many animals out there who haven’t been as lucky.

    I know the chimps aren’t “pets”, but like our pets, they were raised to know, expect and cherish a human bond of love. And beyond that, they actually *need* it because it’s what they know of life. So its lack is psychologically and emotionally devastating, and a reason to just give up. A chimp can live for 60 years in captivity. That’s a long, sad, miserable amount of time to live without what they need the most.

    I’d bet in going back to PPI, the sounds, smells and sights of PPI, connected to the prior anxiety and abuse there would create a chimpanzee’s version of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, with the accompanying hypervigilance over ones state of safety that results in even more stress.

    The chimps *know*. They are sentient beings. We know rescue dogs and cats and horses and donkeys, etc. and etc., who were abused show specific behavior that gives testimony to that abuse, and even so in a new, safe environment. Chimps are no different. They know, they remember, they feel and they suffer. They show it. In the case of The Magnificent 7, they’ve been reunited as a chimp family and rehabilitated at Chimp Haven. And they’re happy again. And safe. And loved. And most of all, being regarded as deserving beings, not property or pawns.

    sentient: /ˈsɛnʃənt/ Pronunciation Key - Show Spelled Pronunciation[sen-shuhnt] Pronunciation Key - Show IPA Pronunciation
    –adjective 1. having the power of perception by the senses; conscious.
    2. characterized by sensation and consciousness.
    –noun 3. a person or thing that is sentient.
    4. Archaic. the conscious mind. (


  3. SmileOnADog says:

    Here are some contacts from the link in the Magnificent Seven article here, quoted from PETA’s site:

    “Please, right now, take just a few moments of your time to contact these authorities to let them know that you oppose this settlement and are concerned about the well-being and safety of the animals at PPI if the old “regime” is returned to power:

    The Honorable Greg Abbott
    Texas Attorney General
    512-322-0578 (fax)

    The Honorable Rick Perry
    Governor of Texas
    1-800-252-9600 (citizen’s opinion hotline)
    512-463-2000 (main switchboard)
    512-463-1849 (fax)”

    It could also help to write or call Ohio State University, to encourage them to step in and do the right thing for these chimps:

    Kathleen Holbrook (contact at OSU)


  4. SmileOnADog says:

    At the link below, *experts* and PPI staff describe “business as usual” at PPI. I had to take a break from reading it twice now, and I’m still not finished because I’m finding it incredibly painful. Death is a word that comes up too often with many of the chimps and monkeys from PPI.

    This can’t really be happening, right? This is America, people don’t do awful things like this and get away with it. And yet the abusers, in the end, still win, and literally do get away with murder.

    I can’t bare watching the old OSU chimp documentary, knowing those shining chimps are no more. Last night I went into my cozy bed to sleep and thought of the PPI chimps and animals lying on concrete floors.

    If I were locked up in a concrete enclosure, with no “enrichment” — meaning, food — fruit, vegetables, nuts, seeds — books, toys, clothes, blankets, bed, etc., a.k.a. love, care and mental stimulation, and no heat in the winter, and no bed to rest on, and no people who are comfortable only when I’m comfortable, what’s really left? What makes life worth living?

    Especially if you used to have at hand everything you loved and wanted, but now it’s all disappeared. It’s even harder, when you know what you’re missing. The chimps know.


  5. Kermit's Community says:

    To learn more about the former OSU primates please visit

E-mail It