Thousands of beagles were recently rescued from a facility in Virginia that bred dogs to sell to laboratories for animal experimentation.
A federal judge ordered the release of approximately 4,000 dogs from the facility, owned by Indiana-based Envigo, after it was found in violation of several federal regulations. The U.S. Humane Society worked with federal authorities to rehome the dogs, and rescue groups across the country took them in.
Twenty-nine of the rescued beagles went to an animal shelter in Munster, Indiana.
There were some initial concerns that the dogs — especially the older ones — would need time to adjust to life outside of the labratory. But Humane Indiana Shelter Director Jessica Petalas said the dogs are very well socialized.
“I know that something that a lot of people were concerned about, if they would be super fearful or not,” Petalas said. “And they're actually very sweet, and sociable with people.”
Petalas said all of the rescued beagles have been adopted.
“A lot of them have breeding experience, it was perfect, because they've been following the story so much. So, I think there were kind of beagle lovers all over the country, just watching the news closely,” Petalas said. “And they found out that we got some and it seemed like we got this huge influx of people locally that we're looking to add to their family, and it was just the right place at the right time.”
Envigo, which is now part of West Lafayette-based Inotiv, announced in June that it would close the Virginia breeding facility.
Inotiv has also come under scrutiny for its animal testing practices. The U.S. Humane Society released a report in April that alleges cases of animal suffering and death.
Indiana lawmakers announced legislation ealier this year to require test animals be put up for adoption.