New York State Passes Legislation to Protect Former Research Animals [
New York State passed legislation last week requiring dogs and cats used in scientific research be put up for adoption before they can be euthanized.
While we wish that animals weren’t used in research at all, this is a step in the right direction.
The bill, which focuses mainly on beagles since they’re the breed most often used in scientific research, would mean that all publicly-funded educational institutions that use dogs or cats in research establish adoption programs for the animals once their work in the lab is done.
The “Beagle Freedom Bill” still needs to be signed into law by Gov. Andrew Cuomo, and would take effect 30 days afterwards.
The proposed legislation would require a veterinarian to assess whether a dog or cat is medically suitable for adoption. If all is well, the animal would be released to an appropriate rescue, shelter or interested pet parent.
The group that has been the driving force behind the bill, The Beagle Freedom Project, has also been successful in passing similar laws in California, Connecticut, Minnesota and Nevada.
Currently, there are federal regulations surrounding animal research on dogs and cats, but nothing that protects these animals once they are no longer required by the lab. Some research facilities have instituted their own adoption programs, but it is unfortunately not the norm, hence the need for specific legislation at the state level.
“All animals, being freed of their testing responsibilities, should be afforded the opportunity of a loving, forever home to live the remainder of their days,” Sen. Phil Boyle, R-Suffolk County, who sponsored the bill, said in a statement.
We couldn’t possibly agree more.
To learn more about The Beagle Freedom Project and what they do, check out the video below — but be warned — it’s a tearjerker that may or may not involve a group of former lab Beagles getting their first taste of freedom.
[Source: WGRZ NBC 2]
Christina Peden is a lifelong animal lover and avid wordsmith. She lives in Toronto with her boyfriend Ryan where they are proud pet parents to puppy, Matilda and cat, Oscar. In her spare time, she can be found enjoying Toronto, Canada's all-too-short patio season, taking advantage of the city's numerous parks or curled up with a good book.
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