Because of the nonprofit organization, 4,000 beagles from the facility thrive now.
Four thousand beagles who spent the majority of their lives at a Virginia breeding facility are now in their safe and comfortable homes. According to USA Today, thousands of dogs living at a breeding facility that is accused of animal welfare violations were transported to shelters across the country to be ready for adoption. The decision to relocate the beagles from the Cumberland, Virginia facility was implemented after the federal government filed a civil enforcement case in 2022 against Envigo RMS, the company that owns and operates the medical research facility. After the case was filed, U.S. District Court Judge Norman Moon issued a restraining order imposing restrictions on the facility, stated the report.
As per The New York Times, investigations into the Envigo breeding center have turned up reports of underfed, ill, and injured dogs, as well as, dogs who were euthanized rather than given medical care, since 2021. In addition, 300 puppy deaths were attributed to "unknown causes" at the facility between January and July 2021. Envigo's parent company - Inotiv, Inc. - closed the Cumberland facility. According to the Associated Press, the Humane Society of the United States safely removed the beagles and transported them to shelters across the country.
The nonprofit had 60 days to remove 4,000 beagles from the facility, and Envigo was required to pay a fee for each dog to assist shelters in preparing the pets for adoption. After working out a plan with Envigo, Homeward Trails Animal Rescue in Fairfax, Virginia, took in over 400 beagles from the breeding facility in Cumberland, ensuring they would not be euthanized. Many of the beagles are thriving in new homes nearly a year later, according to their new housemates. To commemorate the anniversary of their rescue, they roll in the grass, go for long walks and lick birthday cake, reports The New York Times.
A 2-year-old beagle named Fin was adopted by Suzanne Brown-Pelletier within weeks of arriving at the shelter and renamed Sir Biscuit of Barkingham. "He was the last one. I can’t imagine what that must’ve felt like for him. I give him all kinds of kisses on his nose and tell him I’m playing the beagle bugle," she said. Biscuit was drooling from anxiety and "pancaking," or lying flat on the ground when the family first met him. Ms. Brown-Pelletier noticed Biscuit's curiosity as he touched different textures around the house. "His little paws had never touched anything other than a metal cage," she said, and "he didn’t know what a toy was." Alli and Tyler Trent adopted Maple, a beagle who shook uncontrollably in their backyard because she had been caged and had never seen grass or had a treat.
Maple found her feet with the Trents, "and has learned so much and come so far," Ms. Trent said. The 4-year-old beagle enjoys sunbathing and belly rubs, eating crushed ice, and, most importantly, lounging in her bed. "Nothing was easy but she just needed some extra patience and time. She’s learning to trust, and she’s learning that the only people in her life now are good people that love her so much!" Ms. Trent added. Many volunteers have adopted the beagles. Harry and Meghan, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex, were even inspired to adopt a beagle named Momma Mia as a result of the news. New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy adopted a dog named Morty from the facility.
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