Wednesday, January 28, 2015

The Beagle Freedom Project

Did you know that today, across the United States, there are nearly 65,000 dogs (most of them beagles) sitting in cages being used to test cosmetics, pharmaceutical drugs, household products, and academic curiosities with little to no hope of getting out alive.  These tests are often very painful, and frequently result in the death of the dog.

Did you know that over 95% of the dogs in lab testing are beagles, one of the top 5 most popular family dog breeds in America? Beagles are popular with families because of their sweet and docile nature. Sadly, it is these same qualities that make research facilities consider them to be ideal test subjects.

Beagles are the most popular breed for lab use because of their friendly, docile, trusting, forgiving, people-pleasing personalities. The research industry says they adapt well to living in a cage, and are inexpensive to feed. Research beagles are usually obtained directly from commercial breeders who specifically breed dogs to sell to scientific institutions.

If you knew how many of the products you use every day are tested on animals, you would be shocked.  Testing done on beagles in university and other research facilities includes medical/pharmaceutical, household products and cosmetics.

 The Beagle Freedom Project is a mission to rescue beagles used in animal experimentation in research laboratories and give them a chance at life in a loving forever home.

 When they are no longer wanted for research purposes, some labs attempt to find homes for adoptable, healthy beagles. Working directly with these labs, Beagle Freedom Project is able to remove and transport beagles to place them in loving homes. All rescues are done legally with the cooperation of the facility. Find out here how to foster or adopt one of these rescued dogs.

Anyone interested in fostering or adopting a lab beagle should be aware of the challenges these dogs have. They will not be accustomed to life in a home and will not have experience with children, cats, or other dogs. They will not be house-trained and accidents will happen, although they learn quickly. Many have gone directly from a commercial breeder to the lab, and have never felt grass under their feet or even seen the sun. They will have been fed a special diet formulated for lab animals and may be difficult to adjust to new foods. They will be unfamiliar with treats, toys, bedding and may never have walked on a leash. They will have lived in cages with steel wire floors and may have inflamed or infected paws from the pressure. They may be fearful of people initially and may have phobias from a lifetime in confinement or from being restrained. They are likely to have been surgically de-barked by the breeder and have an ID number tattooed in their ear. Please also be aware that although these beagles are considered healthy, you will be given very little information about the beagle’s medical history, and you will not be told its origins or what kind of testing they may have been used for.

With time, patience, play, companionship, love – and most of all, freedom – these dogs will learn how to become dogs, and their transformation will be amazing.

The hope is that they can encourage more research labs to release animals and give them a chance at life, instead of destroying adoptable pets.

There are many things you can do to get involved.
The link above gives a list of ways to participate in the project.  

One very important thing you can do is sign the Beagle Freedom Bill.

Beagle Freedom Project’s important legislative push to enact laws that would ensure research facilities can give dogs used in laboratory testing a chance at a life after research.

Finally, follow the Beagle Freedom Project on social media and share, share, share!


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