Promoting the Welfare,

Care & Future of Beagles

in Animal Experimentation

Whilst lobbying to end the use of Beagles entirely

as a species from animal experimentation, we are

progressing the aim of rehoming those Beagles no

longer required by Research Institutions, which are

suitable to be rehomed into a domestic environment.


Our Story

Our Story

See the background to the Run Free Alliance, its origin and objectives.

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Some celebrity supporters have very kindly agreed to use their profile for our cause.

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You have many questions for us, here are the answers to some of them.

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See Our Blog

See Our Blog

Visit our Blog to keep up to date with our progress plus details of our latest news and events.

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Welcome to the Run Free Alliance – Our Objective:

To promote the welfare, care and future of beagles used for scientific research and experimentation in the United Kingdom, and to provide qualified support to bodies working on alternative methods of testing and research to those involving animals.

Beagle Care & Protection – The History

In 1636 the first official report of using a dog for animal research was published by William Harvey who confirmed his theory that circulation of blood is controlled by the heart and not the lungs as previously thought. This was followed by Sir Christopher Wren in 1657, who reported on the injection of substances into a dog’s bloodstream.

It seems incredible now, that the practice of using animals as experimental subjects still goes on and in so great a magnitude.

Beagles for Experimentation – The Numbers

Hundreds of thousands of Beagles are used in scientific research each year, throughout the world. The latest statistics for the numbers of Beagles used in animal experiments in the UK are for 2020. They show 2738 Beagles were used for the first time in 4270 procedures. The vast majority of these procedures are to satisfy EU regulatory requirements.

Why Beagles

This is a question that is frequently asked not only by group members but members of the public but unfortunately we have found no definitive scientific answer following extensive research. The only conclusion to be reached is that it is ‘historic’. The first well documented mention occurs in the 1800’s when the French physiologist Francois Magendie (1783-1855) and the Scottish anatomist Charles Bell (1744-1842) are credited with neurological research using Beagles. There is also a painting by Emile-Edouard Monchy depicting a Beagle being subjected to vivisection in 1832.

Other research has revealed quotes which also mention that Beagles are the dog breed most often used in animal testing due to their size and passive nature; they are easily maintained; they will eat almost anything (verified by anyone who owns a pet Beagle!) and have a trusting attitude towards humans.

Beagles are Still Bred for Laboratory Experiments

Both here in the UK and all over the World, with some being flown into the UK for use in Research establishments based here.

Treated As Simply Subjects for Experimentation

Sadly for us who have Beagles as companion animals, we know what a loving, docile, trusting, characterful breed they are. This makes it so much harder to accept that procedures are performed on them.

Campaigning Successes So Far

Tobacco testing on dogs and other animals has been banned in the UK since 1997, though we still recall the harrowing pictures of Beagles being made to inhale smoke through a mask in an expose by journalist, Mary Beith in 1975.

Testing of Cosmetic products and their ingredients was banned in the UK in 1998 and subsequently banned across the EU in 2013, due to alternative non-animal, acceptable testing methods being developed.

Although there is a caviat to the above, as any Chemical used in cosmetics are tested for the health and safety of individuals handling such chemicals  eg compliance with ECHA (European Chemical Agency) and their equivalent around the world.

However, the testing of drugs, insecticides, household products, chemicals etc., still goes on, despite well documented failure rates of some 9o%+ of drugs in human Clinical trials, this despite prior animal testing .

Re-homing with a Loving Family

Most of the Beagles used in Laboratory experiments are euthanised after use. The researchers maintain there is a need to examine the internal organs for the effects of the tests made upon them.

FAQHowever, there are some Beagles which, with the sign off from an on-site Veterinary, and the permission of the Secretary of State, can be re-homed into a domestic environment, with the correct socialisation process adopted to ensure a Beagle can be successfully re-homed within a loving family.

Whilst we continue to press for the release of the Beagle as a test species for animal experimentation, we are now referenced, in an Advice Note to the research and breeding establishments, by the Animals in Scientific Regulation Unit (ASRU) at the Home Office. Here we are mentioned as a UK Charity which can be involved in assisting in re-homing of Beagles. We are proactive in this role to enable as many Beagles as possible to live their lives outside of a Laboratory and in a loving home. To achieve this we need as much support as we can possibly get – so please help us.

Please Support Us

To support us then please ‘like’ our Facebook page for announcements, news, updates and fundraising opportunities.

Beagle Use in Experiments & Research. Rehome Beagles from Laboratories. Beagles used in Toxicity testing.


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