VIRGINIA, USA — Months after WUSA9 first reported allegations against a Cumberland breeding and research facility, the 4,000 beagles rescued from the facility are arriving at animal shelters across the country in hopes of finding forever homes.
The dogs were taken from the harsh conditions at Envigo where they were bred in July after a federal judge approved a plan to place the dogs in shelters to be adopted.
Federal officials spent months accusing Envigo of a series of animal welfare violations. Investigators claim the facility performed unnecessarily painful medical experiments on dogs and puppies, including euthanasia without sedatives.
Shelters and volunteers have come together to try to help the rescued puppies. Over the weekend, staff at Homeward Trails hosted what they called a Suds and Netflix night for the newly arrived pups. After getting their first-ever baths, the dogs watched some movies.
The rescue group took 100 of the dogs to the Richmond area for fostering and adoption. They brought 16 adult beagles and eight puppies to our area.
"This is one of the largest dog rescue efforts ever coordinated and has truly been a group effort," Sue Bell, executive director of Homeward Trails, said. "To know that these dogs will get to have the lives they deserve and not languish in cages for the rest of their lives is just so rewarding."
The dogs will eventually be available for adoption at shelters across the nation. Shelters near Maryland and Virginia that plan on taking in groups of beagles include:
- Animal Welfare League of Alexandria
- Animal Welfare League of Arlington
- Fairfax County Animal Shelter
- Green Dogs Unleashed
- Home Fur Hounds
- Homeward Trails
- Lost Dog & Cat Rescue Foundation
- Lucky Dog Animal Rescue
- Loudoun County Animal Services
- Lynchburg Humane Society
- Richmond Animal Care & Control
- Richmond SPCA
- Virginia Beach SPCA
The dogs won't all be going to local shelters, some will be sent as far as California. Those shelters include:
- Helen Woodward Animal Center - California
- Priceless Pets - California
- Humane Society of Broward County - Florida
- Pet Alliance of Greater Orlando - Florida
- Humane Indiana - Indiana
- Southeast Kansas Humane Society - Kansas
- Kentucky Humane Society - Kentucky
- Dakin Humane Society - Massachusetts
- Massachusetts SPCA - Massachusetts
- Northeast Animal Shelter - Massachusetts
- Humane Society of Tulsa - Oklahoma
- Humane Educational Society - Tennessee
- Wisconsin Humane Society - Wisconsin
- Kindness Ranch Animal Sanctuary - Wyoming
The shelters that continue to take in the rescued beagles are not just looking for people to adopt them but also foster homes, volunteers and donations.
Fostering a beagle
If you are looking to help but cannot take in a dog long-term, fostering is always a helpful option. Shelters are looking for people to give a temporary home to a grown beagle or a litter of puppies to help them acclimate to living in a home environment. Most shelters will provide foster homes with food to help take care of the animals.
Click here to learn more about fostering.
Volunteering and donations
If you cannot take a dog in but still want to help. Shelters are looking for hands-on volunteers to help work directly with the animals, administrative work, fundraising and other important behind-the-scenes tasks. Reach out to your closest shelter to see how you can help volunteer your time.
Donations are always appreciated. Money will help provide the best care but if you prefer to donate supplies ask your closest shelter what they currently need. Many shelters have Amazon wish lists that lay out what items they are hoping to get.