4,000 Beagles to Be Rescued From Virginia Research Lab

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Four thousand beagles will be transferred from a Virginia breeding and research facility to be put up for adoption after it was cited for animal welfare violations.

A judge in July approved a plan to transfer the 4,000 beagles housed at Envigo’s facility in Cumberland, Virginia, to shelters.

“The Humane Society of the United States worked with the United States Department of Justice on a transfer plan to remove all of the approximately 4,000 remaining beagles housed at Envigo’s facility in Cumberland, Virginia,” a July 7 statement by the Humane Society reads.

“At this time, we are connecting with our shelter and rescue partners and preparing to take on the monumental process of securing placement for these dogs.”

The Human Society will coordinate the removal of the beagles from the Cumberland facility and transport them to partner animal shelters and rescue organizations mostly on the East Coast and Midwest from where they will be adopted out.

The transfer will take approximately 60 days, according to the court-approved plan (pdf). None will be transferred to shelters outside of the United States and puppies under 8 weeks old will be transported with their mothers.

According to the approved plan, the Humane Society will cover the expense of transporting the beagles but Envigo will pay a fee per animal, which will be passed on to the shelters to defray the costs of preparing them for adoption.

Envigo was acquired in November last year by Inotiv, a contract research organization. Inotiv announced in June that it was shuttering two Envigo facilities in Virginia, the Cumberland purpose-bred canine facility and a Dublin rodent-breeding facility.

More than 300 puppies died of unknown causes at the facility between January and July of last year, according to an inspection report by the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

Senators Welcome Move

U.S. Sens. Mark R. Warner and Tim Kaine, both Virginia Democrats, released a joint statement celebrating the plan.

“After months of advocacy, we’re heartened to know that nearly 4,000 Envigo dogs will be spared a lifetime of suffering and will instead head to loving homes,” Warner and Kaine said in a joint statement.

“We’re also pleased to know that Inotiv—Envigo’s parent company—will shutter its Cumberland facility and that no more dogs will be subject to the appalling conditions and inexcusable distress endured by so many dogs and puppies at the facility.”

Caden Pearson


Caden Pearson is a reporter based in Australia. He has a background in screenwriting and documentary. Contact him on caden.pearson@epochtimes.com.au

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