VA Secretary Robert Wilkie confirmed plans to continue the VA’s controversial medical experimentation on dogs. Wilkie made the announcement Friday to the National Press Club, where he said the practice helps advance medical research for veterans. VA timelines show the experiments, which have come under fire from animal advocates, began in the 1960s. Speaking to the National Press Club, Veteran’s Affairs Secretary Robert Wilkie said he will reauthorize dog experimentation at the VA. The VA started the controversial practice in the 1960s, and has come under fire in recent years from animal rights organisations. Some of the experiments, described by USA Today, include implanting pacemakers in dogs before inducing abnormal heart rhythms and removing parts of their brains to test neurons. The report also said that after the experiments, the dogs are euthanised. USA Today broke the news on November 1 that the VA would continue the experiments, citing obtained documents. Secretary Wilkie confirmed the VA’s plans on Friday, saying they help “advance medical research for veterans.” NOW WATCH: Briefing videos Business Insider Emails & Alerts Site highlights each day to your inbox. Follow Business Insider Australia on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Instagram.