In a Historic Move Beagle Freedom Project Closes Animal Testing Laboratory in Nowata, Oklahoma and Rescues Over 200 Dogs and Cats from Certain Death

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Nonprofit Rescue Organization Acquires Property Where They Will Rehabilitate and Rehome Animal Testing Survivors and Others from Severe Abuse

Aerial of laboratory Beagle Freedom Project shut down

Aerial of the animal testing lab Beagle Freedom Project shut down, where cats and dogs have been held in tiny metal cages and outside in the elements surrounded by electrified fencing, awaiting cruel and toxic chemical testing.
Aerial of the animal testing lab Beagle Freedom Project shut down, where cats and dogs have been held in tiny metal cages and outside in the elements surrounded by electrified fencing, awaiting cruel and toxic chemical testing.

Sweet Beagle begging for love from cage in lab that Beagle Freedom Project shut down

Sweet Beagle used for cruel and toxic chemical testing begging for love from the tiny, cold metal cage where he has spent his entire life - now safe with Beagle Freedom Project.
Sweet Beagle used for cruel and toxic chemical testing begging for love from the tiny, cold metal cage where he has spent his entire life – now safe with Beagle Freedom Project.

Los Angeles, CA & Nowata, Oklahoma, Feb. 14, 2024 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Today, Beagle Freedom Project (BFP) announced they have shut down one third of the flea and tick product testing industry, ending decades of cruel experimentation, and sparing thousands of dogs and cats from future testing and purpose breeding. Beagle Freedom Project has now taken over the 30-acre Nowata, Oklahoma property and facilities where animals were previously held captive, and is transforming the space into Freedom Fields, a rescue, rehabilitation, and adoption center. More than 200 dogs and cats have been surrendered from this now closed laboratory, and liberated from a lifetime of toxic and painful testing, and they are safe with BFP.

Media are invited to tour the full property, meet the survivors (more than 200 dogs, cats, newborn puppies, and a family of 6 pigs) and interview with BFP President and Founder Shannon Keith, today, from 7AM to 3PM CST, at 20045 NS 407 Road, Nowata, OK 74048 (ample parking is available on-site.)

Freedom Fields is where dogs, cats, rabbits and farm animals Beagle Freedom Project rescues from animal testing and experimentation will receive thorough medical care, nutritious food, safe and beautiful habitats, space to roam, and all the protection, love, play, enrichment, and freedom they have been deprived of their entire lives. Rehabilitated animals will be carefully matched to foster and adoptive families by BFP’s dedicated adoption coordination team.

“The importance of this monumental achievement cannot be overstated. Not only have we rescued hundreds of animals from being tested on and certain death, we have also created a pathway for others to do the same,” said BFP President and Founder Shannon Keith. “This has never before been accomplished. We are overjoyed that not only will we give more than 200 dogs and cats their freedom and identity, but that we will also transform an animal testing facility into a place of hope, happiness, rehabilitation, and love.”

Extensive renovations and structural additions at Freedom Fields are underway and include: replacing small, metal cages and inadequate, plastic, makeshift outdoor huts surrounded by electrified fencing, with new barns and habitats for large farm animals, pigs, chickens and rabbits, a landscaped dog park, and indoor/outdoor spaces including cozy, well-appointed dog dens, cat café, catio, senior center, nursery, infirmary, groom room, and visitor center, where guests at Freedom Fields will learn about animal testing before touring the facilities and meeting animals available for adoption.

Over the past three years, BFP has rescued animals from the former Nowata flea and tick product testing laboratory that had been the subject of many USDA citations and violations.

“We have seen first-hand, the horrors these animals have endured: their skin is burned, seared off and infected, they have seizures from the toxins, they endure maddening pain and discomfort while fleas and ticks are bred on their bodies and they are forced to wear cones so they cannot relieve the pain and itching, and so much more. We had to end this.” said Keith. “Rather than rescue the dogs and cats one by one, while the facility continued its cruel operations, several months ago, we took a chance and approached the owner of the facility about relinquishing his USDA license and ending operations. We were successful! As of February 1, 2024, testing at this facility has been shut down and all of the animals have been surrendered to BFP.”

Keith went on to share, “Flea and tick products do not have to be tested on animals and there are safer and better methods of pest management. BFP is currently negotiating the closure of another large lab, and we are also working with several companies that provide natural alternatives to the toxic chemicals animals are subjected to in lab trials and in-home use of these products. Our goal is to shut down this entire industry, paving the way for safer and more ethical means of flea and tick control for dogs and cats, ultimately, reducing deadly toxins that pose a threat to animals, people, our communities, environment, soil, and agriculture.”

Freedom Fields will soon be available for private tours and animal meet and greets.

Watch this VIDEO about the end of testing at this laboratory and the transformation to Freedom Fields. Remote interviews with Shannon Keith, b-roll, video and stills available upon request.

Supporters and friends of BFP had this to say about the news:

“Closing down the animal testing laboratory in Oklahoma is a tremendous victory for Beagle Freedom Project (BFP) and thousands of animals that will never be bred or tested on again. The importance of creating awareness about animal testing and advancing protections for these sentient beings cannot be overstated. That is why the work the BFP does is so important, as is legislation such as the CA Beagle Freedom Bill and Lennon’s Law, that I co-authored and successfully passed with BFP.  This is cause for great celebration – as another major step in advancing animal rights and welfare – something I am passionate about and deeply committed to.” – Assemblymember Marie Waldron (AD-75) 

“As a friend and supporter of Beagle Freedom Project, I have personally been a part of the amazing rescues it has achieved. It’s shocking to think about what happens in product testing labs across the country and how many are completely unaware. Beagle Freedom Project is not only exposing the truth about the horrors of testing on animals, they are working to shut down the industry. Today we are celebrating a major milestone as they shut down an enormous animal testing laboratory Oklahoma, saving over 200 dogs and cats, and transform the 30 acre property into a place of love and freedom.”– Ross McCall, Actor, Band of Brothers

“As a friend and longtime supporter of Beagle Freedom Project, I am so happy to join them in celebrating this incredible milestone. Closing down the animal testing lab in Oklahoma will not only end horrific product trials on hundreds of innocent animals, BFP will transform the property into a place of hope and healing where these and other animal testing and abuse survivors will receive the love, care and freedom they have been deprived of their entire lives.” – Jorja Fox, Actor, CSI: Crime Scene Investigation

“As a friend and longtime supporter of Beagle Freedom Project, I am so happy to join them in celebrating this incredible milestone. Closing down the animal testing lab in Oklahoma is not only the end of horrific product trials on hundreds of innocent animals, BFP will transform the property into a place of hope and healing where these and other animal testing and abuse survivors will receive the love, care and freedom they have been deprived of their entire lives. If we could all just have a little more compassion for these helpless beings, all testing labs could be abolished, once and for all.” – Corey Feldman, Actor and Musician

It’s an incredible relief and a great joy to know that because Beagle Freedom Project has successfully closed the animal testing lab in Oklahoma, over 200 dogs and cats, including pregnant dogs and newborn puppies, are now safe from the toxic testing they suffered there. I have seen the horrors these animals go through with my work with BFP and am thrilled to be a part of this historic event. These sweet animals will be rehabilitated and re-homed with loving families!” – Debbie Gibson, Singer-Songwriter, Record Producer, Actor

As a proud supporter of Beagle Freedom Project, and a staunch anti-animal testing advocate, I am thrilled that this laboratory in Oklahoma, has been closed. I have personally been a part of many BFP rescues, and to see the looks on these dogs faces when they are finally free, touch grass, and experience love for the first time is priceless and gut-wrenching. We know that this closure and takeover will have a ripple effect in the community and many more animal testing labs will hopefully follow suit and do the right thing.”.– Raine Michaels, Actor & Model

About Beagle Freedom Project

Established in 2010, Beagle Freedom Project (BFP) a non-profit organization based in Los Angeles, California, is the world’s foremost rescue and rehoming organization for animals used in laboratory testing. Since its inception, BFP has liberated more than 4,000 animals while working to end the archaic use of animals in testing, through education, rescue, and advocacy. The organization’s Beagle Freedom Bill mandating the adoption of dogs and cats from labs, that would otherwise be euthanized, has passed in 13 states, and their Cruelty Cutter app is the leading cruelty-free shopping app in the U.S. BFP’s programs have won prestigious awards like the Lush Prize for Public Awareness and the GuideStar Platinum Seal of Transparency. Shannon Keith, BFP Founder and President, is an animal rights attorney who has also produced award-winning documentaries “Behind the Mask” and “Sanctuary”. Learn more at bfp.org.

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Attachments

CONTACT: Sasha Itzikman Beagle Freedom Project 818.383.7970 [email protected] 

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