Rescued research dogs get lives they never dreamed possible - CBS News 8 - San Diego, CA News Station - KFMB Channel 8

Rescued research dogs get lives they never dreamed possible

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By News 8's Craig McKee

(CBS 8) - They have never seen daylight or felt grass under their paws. Two beagles that were used for research are getting their first taste of freedom from the lab.

"Most people have seen the video and were in disbelief that animal testing was still going on especially with dogs," animal rights defense attorney Shannon Keith said.

The beagles in the video are being handed over from an unnamed California laboratory that Keith says planned on euthanizing the dogs just before Christmas.

"These beagles in this particular facility have been used for toxicity testing for products that were already on the market," Keith said.

It's something she says is more common than one thinks. A website linked to her rescue site claims several popular companies do animal testing, something required by the federal government for pharmaceuticals and some chemicals, but not for cosmetics or household goods.

Keith adds that some companies claim to be animal-free, but circumvent the system by having independent labs do the work for them.

"Yes, that's something that definitely happens with cosmetics," Keith said.

And while free from the lab, the tattoos in their ears and reactions to simple things are some of the emotional scars left behind.

"We know that their blood has been taken 11 times a week, and that's why every time they walk up to a human being they offer up their paw for blood," Keith said.

Both of the dogs, named Freedom and Bigsby, are now in loving homes where they feel the grass under their feet every day.

There's something on the horizon to stop animal testing called Tox-21. it's a project under the EPA that aims to find and use other scientific methods for testing results, rather than using animals.

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