I have a new passion in my life. It’s called The Beagle Freedom Project(BFP). It’s an outreach of Animal Rescue, Media & Education (ARME). BFP is all about rescuing animals incarcerated in research labs after the labs are finished using the animals for testing. Usually, the animals are murdered, or as the labs like to put it “euthanized”, when the lab is finished with their testing. The labs feel the animals, after spending their entire lives in cages, suffering through heaven knows what kind and how many tests, are no longer adoptable. Huh?
The organization is called The Beagle Freedom Project because the majority of animals used in research labs are beagles, but they are involved in the rescue of any and all animals from testing labs. Approximately 70,000 beagles are used in research labs in any given year. Because they have a trusting, docile personality, they are the animal of choice. As a beagle mommy, this breaks my heart. The types of testing include medical/pharmaceutical, household products, and cosmetics. Here’s a kicker though, every year, 106,000 people die from drugs tested safe on animals. Why are we, as an educated nation, still conducting this type of research on animals? But that’s a whole different issue.
In addition to rescuing these animals, BFP is lobbying across the nation, state by state, for The Beagle Freedom Bill. This bill would require any research lab funded by tax payer funds to release the research animals for adoption rather than killing them, when the lab has finished using the animals for testing. Their hope, and mine, is to get this passed as a federal law.
I support BFP financially as a monthly doner. I have also “adopted” a dog through their Identity Campaign. This campaign allows people to adopt a research animal while the animal is still incarcerated in a lab, to advocate for the animal’s release. Will dog #30209, now known as Del Rio, every be released from the research lab at Texas A&M? That is unknown. At this point, I don’t know anything about the dog, whether it’s a male or female, or even whether it’s still alive, as Texas A&M has petitioned the Texas Attorney General for the right to refuse to provide any information I requested under the Freedom of Information Act. I cried when I got that email. What exactly are they trying to hide?
I’ve emailed my story to all of the local radio, television, and print outlets in the area, asking them to consider doing a human interest story. It’s been a few weeks and I haven’t heard anything back from anyone. I guess they don’t feel anyone would be interested in this type of story, although BFP has posted on Twitter links to other local papers, in other areas, that covered the Identity Campaign. I want to do all I can to get the word out about these animals and to support this organization. It’s the least we can do for them.
I encourage you to download the BFP application that lets you check to see if a product is tested on animals. It’s called The Cruelty Cutter and it’s
free only $2.99*. I no longer buy any products that are tested on animals. This causes a bit of a … discussion with Scuba Man, but it’s worth it. I just tell him to imagine it’s our little girl in that lab. Would you still want to support that company by buying their products?
Please stop by the Beagle Freedom Project and see the work they do. Maybe you, too, will want to support them.
*Thanks to my friend Barb for pointing out my mistake AND for downloading the Cruelty Cutter app. Free the Beagles!