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Reunion Held For One-Year Anniversary Of Beagles’ Rescue From NJ Animal Lab

A reunion was held in New City, NY for 120 beagles - and their owners - that were rescued from a closed NJ animal research laboratory last year. (Credit: CBS 2)

A reunion was held in New City, NY for 120 beagles – and their owners – that were rescued from a closed NJ animal research laboratory last year. (Credit: CBS 2)

Cindy Hsu thumbnail Cindy Hsu
Cindy Hsu is an Emmy Award winning anchor and reporter who has been at...
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NEW CITY, N.Y. (CBS 2) — Last year, 120 beagles were rescued from a research lab that had suddenly closed its doors. Many of the dogs and their new owners gathered Sunday for a very special reunion.

Just by the look of them Sunday, they seemed like happy animals. For the dozens of beagles, though, it’s a life they almost didn’t have, reports CBS 2’s Cindy Hsu.

“She’s just had such a journey the past year,” Tracy Lewis said.

Lewis was one of the people who adopted one of the 120 beagles who were rescued last year. The dogs were found locked in a New Jersey research facility that had gone bankrupt, with many of the animals bred just for medical research.

“Coming from being cooped up in a cage her whole life and not being on grass, to just loves to run – she’s just full of energy all the time,” Lewis said.

At Kennedy Dells Park in New City, it was an opportunity for the owners of the mets to meet, share stories from the past year, and see each other in person. Many of the families even created a Facebook page called “Freegle Friends.”

“We speak on a daily basis. We speak about the trials and tribulations of dealing with a laboratory beagle,” Debbie Vobroucek, who organized the reunion, said. “We share the joys and we help each other with our problems.”

Beagles are widely used in medical research because of their calm nature, their relative lack of inherited problems and their mid-range size – the same characteristics that make them the perfect pet for the Annunziato family from Saddle Brook, New Jersey.

“They adjusted immediately, there were no potty issues,” Karen Annunziato said. “It was like they had never been in a lab.”

For others the adjustment was gradual, but om the emd. They are all in a far better place than where they were a year ago.

“She’s becoming a beagle,” Lewis said. “Recognizing the sights and the smells – stuff that she never would have been exposed to if she was kept in a cage her whole life.”

There were dozens of monkeys that were also rescued from the closed lab. They were sent to an animal sanctuary in the Midwest.

Last year, 120 beagles were rescued from a research lab that had suddenly closed its doors. Many of the dogs and their new owners gathered Sunday for a very special reunion.

Just by the look of them Sunday, they seemed like happy animals. For the dozens of beagles, though, it’s a life they almost didn’t have.

“They’ve had such a long journey this past year,” Tracy Lewis said.

Lewis was one of the people who adopted one of the 120 beagles who were rescued last year. The dogs were found locked in a New Jersey research facility that had gone bankrupt, with many of the animals bred just for medical research.

“Coming from being cooped up in a cage her whole life and not being on grass, she’s just full of energy all the time,” Lewis said.

At Kennedy Dells Park in New City, it was an opportunity for the owners of the mets to meet, share stories from the past year, and see each other in person. Many of the families even created a Facebook page called “Freegle Friends.”

“We speak on a daily basis. We speak about the trials and tribulations of raising a laboratory beagle,” ________ said. “We share the joys and help each other with our problems.”

Beagles are widely used in medical research because of their calm nature, their relative lack of inherited problems and their mid-range size – the same characteristics that make them the perfect pet for the Annuziato family from Saddle Brook, New Jersey.

“They adjusted immediately, there were no potty issues,” _______ said. “It was like they were never in a lab.”

For others the adjustment was gradual, but om the emd. They are all in a far better place than where they were a year ago.

“She’s becoming a beagle,” ________ said.

There were dozens of monkeys that were also rescued from the closed lab. They were sent to an animal sanctuary in the Midwest.