A new chapter is beginning for thousands of dogs born into an abusive breeding facility in Cumberland, Virginia. As Reuters reports, the U.S. Humane Society is saving roughly 4000 beagles bred for animal testing, and many of the rescues have already found their forever homes.
The rescue process started after Envigo—a company that bred beagles and sold them to testing sites—closed after violating animal welfare laws. Dogs that spent their entire lives in the facility suffered from disease, malnutrition, overbreeding, and overcrowded conditions.
Envigo shut down its breeding business over the summer, which means the beagles that were born into it are now in need of stable, loving homes. The U.S. Humane Society has begun placing dozens of dogs with shelters across the country, including the Animal Welfare League of Arlington in Virginia, Triangle Beagle Rescue in North Carolina, and the Brandywine Valley SPCA in Pennsylvania.
All the rescues are in need of serious physical and emotional care. In addition to receiving vaccinations and treatment for various medical issues, the beagles will get their first taste of life as normal pets. Even mundane activities—such as sniffing grass or chewing toys—will be new experiences for dogs that have been raised in cages, and they will need to be eased into them.
The Humane Society has just started its rescue efforts, and already many of the beagles have found permanent families. There's still much work to do, however. The last batch of animals to be rescued have lived at the facility the longest, and they will likely require the most rehabilitation. If you can't help the rescued dogs by giving them a home, you can still support the cause by donating money or supplies to one of the shelters involved.