Photos: 400-plus beagles removed from breeding facility in Virginia by Humane Society
CUMBERLAND, Va. (WDBJ/USHS Release) - The Humane Society of the United States and several shelter and rescue partners removed the first 432 of approximately 4,000 beagles at Envigo RMS LLC’s facility in Cumberland, Virginia Thursday, according to the Humane Society. Envigo bred dogs to be sold to laboratories for animal experimentation.
Anyone interested in adopting one of the beagles should view the HSUS’ list of partners that are accepting the beagles into their adoption program here.
Homeward Trails, Priceless Pets, Helen Woodward Animal Center and Kindness Ranch Animal Sanctuary picked up groups of dogs removed from the facility Thursday. The Humane Society of the United States took 201 beagles to its care and rehabilitation center, where they will receive care and TLC until they are transported to MSPCA, Wisconsin Humane and Dakin Humane later in the week. RedRover Responders are assisting the HSUS with daily animal needs.
“Despite the long day, the puppies perked up and immediately started bounding around their kennels and playing as soon as they settled in,” said Jessica Johnson, senior director of the Animal Rescue Team for the Humane Society of the United States. “For these resilient puppies, hopefully, their ear tattoos are the only reminders of their past.”
The removal of these dogs was part of a transfer plan that was submitted by the Department of Justice and Envigo RMS LLC, with the agreement of the Humane Society of the United States to assume the responsibility of coordinating placement. The transfer plan comes as a result of a lawsuit filed against Envigo by the Department of Justice in May, alleging Animal Welfare Act violations at the facility. Government inspectors allege beagles there were being killed instead of receiving veterinary treatment for easily treated conditions; nursing mother beagles were denied food; the food that they did receive contained maggots, mold and feces; and over an eight-week period, 25 beagle puppies died from cold exposure. Other dogs suffered from injuries when they were attacked by other dogs in overcrowded conditions.
“This is a truly historic moment in animal protection, as 4,000 beagles are spared a life of animal testing. We are honored that the Department of Justice asked us to lead this massive operation,” said Kitty Block, president and CEO of the Humane Society of the United States. “Our Animal Rescue Team is ready for this challenge because this is who we are—what we have trained for—we take on what otherwise seems impossible. We are grateful to our dedicated independent rescue and shelter partners, a network of organizations in communities throughout the country. These remarkable dogs now have wonderful homes and lives ahead of them, just as they deserve.”
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