Bill Maher Goes to Bat for 500 Beagles Destined for Experiments

For Immediate Release:
June 22, 2022

Moira Colley 202-483-7382

Cumberland, Va. – PETA Honorary Director Bill Maher has a new rule for Envigo, a beagle-breeding factory farm that supplies laboratories but is set to close after racking up more than 70 federal Animal Welfare Act violations since July 2021: All remaining dogs must go to adoptive homes.

The Virginia facility is being permitted to sell 500 dogs for use in experiments, and in a letter to the CEO of Inotiv, Envigo’s parent company, Maher writes, “How can you look these gentle beagles in the eye—knowing that they feel pain and fear just like the dogs who share our homes—and sentence them to a lifetime of suffering? These long-neglected animals have suffered enough in the name of profit for your company, [so] please give every last one the freedom to enjoy life with a loving family.”

The move follows a Department of Justice complaint and a seven-month PETA investigation into Envigo, which revealed that more than 360 puppies were found dead and that workers with no veterinary credentials stuck needles into puppies’ heads without any pain relief, intentionally withheld food from famished nursing mother dogs and their puppies, sprayed dogs with cold water from high-pressure hoses, and abused them in other ways. In May, law-enforcement officials seized nearly 450 dogs and puppies in “acute distress,” and earlier this month, Inotiv announced that it would close the facility.

“Inotiv and Envigo’s failures have made headlines across the country, but you still have time to do the right thing,” concludes Maher. “Please let them be adopted now.”

PETA—whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to experiment on or abuse in any other way”—opposes speciesism, a human-supremacist worldview. Broadcast-quality video footage from PETA’s investigation is available here, and photographs from it are available here. For more information, please visit or follow the group on Twitter, Facebook, or Instagram.

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 Ingrid E. Newkirk

“Almost all of us grew up eating meat, wearing leather, and going to circuses and zoos. We never considered the impact of these actions on the animals involved. For whatever reason, you are now asking the question: Why should animals have rights?” READ MORE

— Ingrid E. Newkirk, PETA President and co-author of Animalkind