One of the 4,000 beagle puppies rescued from deplorable living conditions at a research facility in Virginia last month has found her forever home with a newlywed couple on Long Island.
Mandu, a 9-week-old beagle, has moved in with nurse Leigh Cohen Martz in Long Beach after the pup was rescued from the Envigo breeding and research facility in Cumberland in one of the largest canine rescue efforts in US history.
The puppies were to be sold for use in pharmaceutical and biotech research. But since their rescue, which drew national attention, they have been shipped to animal shelters across the country for adoption.
One seven-month-old beagle, Mamma Mia, was adopted by Prince Harry and Meghan Markle after Markle read about the Envigo lab and wanted to help out.
“I was actually walking Mandu on our morning walk and a bunch of our neighbors were talking about Meghan and Harry rescuing a puppy from the Envigo lab and we were all kind of giggling because so is Mandu,” Martz told CBS.
Mandu’s mother gave birth to a litter of six the day after she was rescued from the lab, the outlet reported.
At the facility, investigators discovered malnourished, sick and injured beagles, according to a federal complaint. The dogs were locked in cages where feces and food waste piled up. More than 300 puppies died at the facility between January and July of last year, officials said.
“She doesn’t truly know how lucky she is,” said Martz. “She would have been sold for experiments.”
Martz, who is recently married to her husband Jessie, said it was an emotional experience driving hours to pick up the newest member of their family.
“I was crying randomly just out of the excitement,” she said. [Mandu was] wrapped in a baby’s blanket from the hospital, but it had her mom’s scent on it and her litter’s scent. Jessie and I got really emotional.”
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