Dozens Of Beagles Rescued From Envigo Breeding Facility Find New Homes

HENRICO, Va. (WWBT) – In the backyard of his home in Henrico, Frank Payne loves to play with his two dogs, River and Billy. Billy, a 15-week-old beagle, has had a second chance to live alongside thousands of rescued beagles from the Envigo Breeding Facility in Cumberland County.

Frank Payne adopted Billy the Beagle in early July.(Source; NBC12 | NBC12)

Payne told NBC12 that his adoption story with Billy began when a foster family approached him at a tennis event.

“It had heard that I was a big fan of beagles,” Payne said.

Frank Payne brought home a 15-week-old beagle rescued from the Envigo Breeding Facility in...
Frank Payne brought home a rescued 15-week-old beagle from the Envigo Breeding Facility in Cumberland.(Source; NBC12 | NBC12)

In early July, Payne began the process of adopting Billy, who was among the first group of beagles rescued from the Cumberland facility.

When Billy arrived at his new home, Payne thought he was suffering from separation anxiety from his pack. Days later, Payne said Billy had adapted quickly to his new home alongside his four-legged friend, River.

Frank Payne's dogs, Billy and River, spend all their time playing in his garden.
Frank Payne’s dogs, Billy and River, spend all their time playing in his garden.(Source; NBC12 | NBC12)

“This dog has a lot of energy,” Payne said. “He is very intelligent.”

According to court documents, inspectors allege that beagles at the Envigo breeding facility lived in horrific conditions and were fed food filled with maggots and feces. A total of 4,000 beagles were rescued from the facility. With help from the Humane Society of the United States, the beagles were taken to shelters and organizations across the country to help find new homes.

“To assume he was going to be in a cage for the rest of his life, I can’t imagine that and understand that,” Payne said.

Billy the Beagle settles into his new home Henrico after being rescued from the Envigo...
Billy the Beagle settles into his new home Henrico after being rescued from the Envigo breeding facility.(Source; NBC12 | NBC12)

Billy was adopted from Richmond Animal Care and Control, one of many places connecting dozens of beagles to families in River City.

“Since we got these adorable little buckets of love, we’ve had tremendous interest from citizens across the country,” said Christie Chipps Peters, director of Richmond Animal Care and Control.

Since the beginning, the RACC has welcomed 87 beagles.

“Whenever there’s a call to action in our state that we can help, we really try to do it,” she said.

At this time, RACC said 28 beagles, including four mothers and their litters, are still in foster care and should be ready for adoption from mid-September until the end of the month.

RACC said it’s an effort they’re grateful to be a part of.

“I think just being able to offer our help and support in trying to find these forever animals homes that may not have had a great life before has been very rewarding for our staff,” Chipps said. Peters. “We’ve found some really wonderful homes for them.”

Payne is grateful to give his new furry family member a new home and a new life.

“We made the best decision of our lives,” Payne said. “We constantly say it’s a great decision. We love this dog to death, and it has been wonderful.

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Jennifer R. Strohm