Why are Beagles Used in Labs? Reasons For Experiments and Research

Why are Beagles Used in Labs

It’s no secret that beagles are commonly used in laboratories for research purposes, but why are beagles used in labs?. They are bred specifically for this purpose and are known for their gentle nature and easy-going temperament. Beagles make ideal research animals because they are relatively small, so they can be housed in tight quarters, and they are docile, meaning that they won’t put up too much of a fight when it comes time for experiments.

Veterinary science, research, and technology are all based on animal testing. In the United States, animals are frequently used in scientific studies. Guinea pigs, mice, rabbits, and dogs are all subjected to examination. Dog testing is more popular as experts favor more regular dog testing because their DNA is similar to human DNA.

Different research facilities utilized dogs in heart and lung disease, cancer, and orthopedics studies. Toxicology studies use these poor animals to evaluate the safety of pharmaceuticals and industrial chemicals, but rarely personal care and household goods. Most research dogs are developed in labs or by companies that sell to labs. Dogs can be bred to be pathogen-free or genetically changed to imitate human diseases.

Reasons for Using Beagles in Experiments and Research

Beagles have been used in research laboratories for decades now, and they continue to be one of the most popular breeds for this purpose. Their obedience, docile nature, and physical traits make them lab-friendly. There are several reasons why beagles make ideal research animals.

Why are beagles are used in labs? Some of the most consequential reasons include;

1. Beagles are small

This is probably the most obvious reason why beagles are used in labs. They don’t take up much space, so they can be housed in small quarters. This is important when you’re dealing with a large number of animals.

2. Beagles are docile

Beagles are known for being gentle and easygoing. They don’t tend to get too excited or agitated, which makes them ideal for experiments.

3. Beagles are adaptable

Beagles are able to adapt to new environments and situations relatively easily. This means that they can be used in a variety of different experiments without too much hassle.

4. Beagles have a good disposition

Beagles are generally happy and good-natured dogs. They get along well with people and other animals, which makes them ideal for research purposes.

5. Beagles are easy to care for

Beagles the research dog doesn’t require a lot of special care or attention. They are relatively low-maintenance animals, which is important when you’re dealing with a large number of them.

Do you Know?

Beagling is the practice of tracking and following a scent, usually that of a rabbit or hare. Beagles have an incredible sense of smell, which makes them perfect for this type of work. They are also relatively small dogs, so they can easily maneuver through tight spaces and underbrush.

Types of Experiments and Testing on Beagles

Medications, experiments, and testing are performed on Beagles. Before being sold, medications, chemicals, and medicines are evaluated on beagles.

Following are the experiments that are performed on beagles in labs for different purposes,

Trial Testing For Surgeries

Beagles are used to evaluate surgical procedures such as kidney transplants, coronary bypass surgery, and pacemaker implantation. This is done to examine the functioning of foreign body materials in the dog’s body and, eventually, through clinical trials, in the human body.

A sad and lonely looking beagle

Medication Trial

Before allowing them to be used in human clinical trials, medicines and vaccinations are sometimes evaluated on these poor animals. Ineffective experiments can hurt humans. The dog is drugged or force-fed. These drugs may slow-kill them.

Beagles were tested for cancer drugs that reportedly caused diabetes, as well as opioids, a Hepatitis B pill, and a Cushing’s syndrome prescription. The paper investigated these drugs for adverse effects, but not for illness treatment.

Testing Domestic items

Annually, consumers utilize domestic things 1,000 times more. These home items are tested on Beagles before being sold. The medicine is applied to shaved skin or administered via food or drink for research.

Biomedical research labs

Biomedical laboratories utilize beagles for cardiopulmonary investigations, cancer research, and prosthetic device testing. Beagles and other animals are used to test new medications. All drugs have side effects that must be documented for research. Medical and pharmacological tests on Beagles help understand clinical safety and biological process.

From Where Does This Huge Number of Beagles Come From?

In order to understand why beagles are so commonly used in research laboratories, we must first take a look at where they come from.

Purpose Breeding

A great majority of beagles used in experiments are purpose-bred by companies that sell them specifically for this reason. These companies furnish labs with dogs bred and other bred animals. Their contract-based plan lasts years. The average beagle mother dog breed between one and 10 puppies. These business owners gain big benefits. Beagles are sold as one-year-olds, so they undergo rigorous testing like other laboratory animals. These businesses breed beagles with agreeable temperaments and physical characteristics that make them ideal laboratory animals.

Animal Shelters

The second-largest source of beagles used in research comes from animal shelters. Every year, thousands of beagles are turned over to shelters by their owners, and many of these dogs end up being used in experiments. While some people may be against the idea of using shelter dogs for research, it should be noted that these animals would likely be euthanized if they were not adopted or used in this way.

Pioneer Use of Beagles in Lab Experiments

Since roughly a hundred years ago, beagles have been utilized in laboratory trials and tests. The tests were performed to determine the flow of blood and organ interactions throughout a dog’s body.

The first university to test beagles

Utah was the first institution to conduct beagle experiments. The University of Utah bought eight beagles from Weston, West Virginia dog breeder A. Clyde Clark on April 3, 1951. Other beagles came from Salt Lake City backyard breeders. The University had purchased 61 beagles for breeding by March 1, 1952, and the program had begun.

The Beagle Project

The AEC financed “The Beagle Project” at the University of Utah. All beagles were injected with deadly plutonium. Some dogs were injected with exceedingly dangerous dosages, and they all endured radiation poisoning without anesthesia. Bone tumors, skeletal disfigurations, tooth loss, and “spontaneous” fractures were all seen in dogs given large doses. The dogs given the most radium had over 20 fractures per dog, compared to none in the control groups.

Beagle Testing Laboratories

The Atomic Energy Commission contracted UC-Davis, Argonne National Laboratory, Pacific Northwest Laboratory, Lovelace Respiratory Research Institute, and Colorado State University to test beagles.

Animal welfare act

At least 56 commercial beagle breeding facilities were marketing their dogs, primarily to the research business, by 1970, when The Beagle as an Experimental Dog, a scientific “how-to” manual, was released. Because of the increased supply capability, tens of thousands of beagles may be secretly reared and butchered each year for a huge profit.

Despite beagle experiments, the panel had no useful information on Cold War human health. Animal rights organizations said the beagles’ deaths were unnecessary, yet the experiments continued. In an opinion piece for the San Diego Union-Tribune, a former lab scientist said the research was harmful to humans. Lawrence Hansen says 95% of animal tests fail in humans.

Animal Usage Report

According to the USDA, 62,000 dogs are utilized annually in U.S. labs, and 38,000 are bred and held at government, university, or commercial labs. Beagles are still the most popular choice for laboratory studies and medical research, but scientists often use shelter dogs.

The Humane Society of the United States investigated a Mount Vernon animal testing lab for seven months and found hundreds of dead and poisonous animals, including monkeys and beagles. According to the study, 80 beagle puppies were forced to swallow a medicine via stomach tube for several months.

The Beagle Freedom Project

The Beagle Freedom Project rescues and rehomes lab animals. BFP rescues and rehabilitates animals used in testing and research and those subjected to brutality, abuse, and neglect. BFP uses educational programs, campaign actions, and lobbying to improve the world for animals and humans.

Alternative for research dogs

The National Research Council of the United States has stated that “virtually all routine toxicity testing will be conducted in human cells or cell lines in the not-too-distant future,” and scientists from around the world have echoed this sentiment.


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My Beagle Buddy is a Beagle resource created by my husband, Simon and myself, Theresa and our two Beagles, Baylee and Bonnie.

For over 12 years, we have had the pleasure of experiencing life with many loving Beagles, sharing our joy through the ups and being steadfastly by our side through the tough times.

We have learnt a lot in those years, about ourselves and our Beagles. We love to write about our Beagle experiences so that others may find some use in our learnings and experiences.

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