Animal Breeding Company Hit with $35M Fine for Surrendering
4,000 Beagles Used in Medical Research

Animal Breeding Company Hit with $35M Fine for Surrendering 4,000 Beagles Used in Medical Research

The Department of Justice (DOJ) and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) recently announced a record-breaking $35 million fine against a company responsible for major violations at a Virginia dog breeding facility. This facility, which had to surrender over 4,000 beagles in 2022, was cited for not meeting the minimal humane standards required for animal care.

The DOJ’s actions in 2022 led to the surrender of these dogs from a facility that was involved in breeding and selling animals for research purposes. The operators were found deficient in providing the necessary care for these animals. The facility faced issues such as inadequate veterinary services, poor living conditions, and insufficient food and sanitation. Thankfully, many of these dogs were eventually rescued and found new homes.

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“Envigo compounded the heartbreaking nature of its animal welfare crimes by committing egregious Clean Water Act violations that undermined public health and the wellbeing of the animals in their care,” said David M. Uhlmann, assistant administrator of EPA’s Office of Enforcement and Compliance Assurance.

“Everyone victimized in this precedent-setting animal welfare case deserved better: the workers, the beagles, the environment and the community,” he added. “Envigo deserves every dollar of its record fine.”

In detail, the fine includes criminal fines, charitable donations, and additional funds to improve their operational standards. Envigo Global Services, one of the companies linked to the facility, admitted guilt to conspiring to violate the Clean Water Act. They failed to properly manage wastewater treatment, resulting in contamination that affected both the animals and the staff at the facility.

Furthermore, another associated company, Envigo RMS, also pleaded guilty to conspiracy charges under the Animal Welfare Act. They were charged with failing to provide necessary veterinary care, sufficient staffing, and safe living conditions for the animals.

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Inotiv Inc., the parent company, has stated that this agreement ends the legal scrutiny of their practices. “Inotiv’s top priority has always been — and remains — practicing appropriate standards of animal welfare for our animals, while supporting the scientific objectives of the studies conducted. We strive to maintain facilities that are compliant with applicable federal, state, and local laws and regulations and consistent with our core value to always do the right thing. That is why we worked to reach this agreement, and why we have agreed to go above and beyond those legal requirements,” the company emphasized in a statement.

Of the total $35 million, approximately $22 million is allocated as a criminal fine, with $3 million going to the Humane Society of the United States and the Virginia Animal Fighting Taskforce. Additionally, $3.5 million will support the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation for ecosystem restoration, and another $7 million will be used to enhance their facilities beyond what the Animal Welfare Act typically requires.

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