by Jennifer Mishler
Categories: Animals, Causes
Tags: .
Photo: Beagle Freedom Project

If this story and video doesn’t bring you smiles and happy tears, I just don’t know what will.

For this group of dogs, life didn’t start out that way, though. A total of 72 beagles were removed from a research laboratory in Spain, and 32 of them were adopted in Europe. The future for the remaining 40 dogs was uncertain, until the Beagle Freedom Project stepped in. The Project is part of Animal Rescue Media Education (ARME), a nonprofit started by animal rights attorney and filmmaker, Shannon Keith. Their work is devoted to rescuing and finding homes for beagles formerly used in research. According to their website, beagles are often “friendly, docile, trusting, forgiving, people-pleasing personalities.”

The organization had the 40 dogs flown from Spain to Los Angeles, California where they would find them new homes. Gary Smith of Beagle Freedom Project said, “We’ve been told they lived one per cage in rooms of 10 beagles, but they never had any physical interaction with one another.” “They’ve been in kennels since they were rescued about a week ago, but aside from that, they’ve spent most of their lives locked up,” according to the Huffington Post.

Smith gave us an update today on the beagles who are still adjusting to life free from cages and experiments. “As of now, all of the beagles are with fosters and fosters to adopters. We had eight staying with us in our beagle sanctuary, formerly known as our kitchen. We are down to the two that we plan to foster and adopt if Chloe, our 15 year old cat (who has chronic renal failure) gives us permission. They are Frederick (Freddie) and Douglass (Doug). Of the six we fostered out of our sanctuary, they are all adjusting, some faster than others. It will take time for the dogs to truly trust anyone. Doug allowed me to pet him for the very first time last night, after six days! Freddie gets up at 3 am and runs in circles in our kitchen and outside.”

Big thank you’s to Gary and Shannon Keith and the rest of Beagle Freedom Project for taking in these 40 dogs and changing their world. If you are interested in adopting one of the dogs still in need of a home or making a donation to help, you can get more information here.

Below, watch an amazing video from June of 9 other beagles rescued from a research lab, as Beagle Freedom Project helps them step out of their cages and into grass and sunshine for the first time.

About Jennifer Mishler

Jennifer Mishler is a writer, and a vegan and animal activist. When she's not writing, you can often find her volunteering or advocating for animal, environmental and human rights causes. Along with writing for Ecorazzi, she has contributed writing for nonprofits like Sea Shepherd Conservation Society, and enjoys blogging. She resides in the Washington, DC area (and loves all the vegan food it has to offer). Follow Jennifer on Twitter: @jennygonevegan.

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  • LittleMe

    Ok, so admittedly I shed a tear or two. Anyone with a heart can’t possibly believe animal testing is justified, especially with that kind of footage.

    Millions of animals continue to suffer but for that lucky bunch of adorable dogs, there’ll be no morr pain and cruelty.

    Sad but heartwarming. The people who are involved with the organisation are truly amazing.

  • Maureen Carter

    Oh, I want one!

  • Kim

    Thank you so much for doing what you do! I have two beagle babies myself and this story broke my heart. I’m so happy their finding a forever home!

  • http://www.newtechgroups.com Sudhir Sajwan

    A welcome step.

  • http://internetexplorer Carole Hayes

    It was so heartwarming to see these dogs respond to human touch after what they have been through. It brought tears to my eyes to see them take their first steps outside for the first time. What a wonderful new beginning for each of them.

  • PJ Harrison

    If this bothers you (and I’m here to tell you, if I had a magic wand it would be the researchers in the cage)then only purchase cruelty free products, refuse to support and organization or company that uses animals for research and support legislation to ban testing (it’s generally inacurate and obsolete anyhow). Sadly, it’s all about supply and demand…so shun those people and products that do it if you want to see change.

  • jeff ircink

    what exactly was the reason these dogs were placed in a research lab? what’s THAT backstory?

  • andrew

    This video was so Heartbreaking even though it had a happy ending for these dogs. I couldnt ever imagine the heartaches they had to endure through all they were put through. Watching the dogs brought tears to my eyes