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Long Island couple adopts beagle rescued from Virginia animal testing lab

L.I. couple raising beagle rescued from Virginia lab breeding facility
L.I. couple raising beagle rescued from Virginia lab breeding facility 02:03

LONG BEACH, N.Y. -- A Long Island nurse says she is treasuring the opportunity of a lifetime to rescue a dog from terrible circumstances. 

CBS2's Jennifer McLogan introduces us to this charming puppy being welcomed into the Long Beach community. 

A 9-week-old adopted beagle named Mandu is holding court. 

"I was actually walking Mandu on our morning walk and a bunch of our neighbors were talking about Meghan and Harry rescuing a puppy from the Envigo lab and we were all kind of giggling because so is Mandu," said dog owner Leigh Cohen Martz. 

Mandu, like the Duchess of Sussex's and Prince Harry's newest adoptee Mamma Mia, is among 4,000 beagles rescued from a Virginia breeding facility, which federal officials said were to be sold to laboratories for animal testing. 

"She doesn't truly know how lucky she is," said Martz. "She would have been sold for experiments." 

The day after Mandu's mother was rescued from the lab, she gave birth to a litter of six. 

Martz, back in 2020 as a pediatric nurse practitioner, was among the first to give COVID shots.

She and her husband Jessie are newlyweds and said it was an emotional, hours-long ride to pick up their new addition. 

"I was a mess, I was so excited," she said. "I was crying randomly just out of the excitement. Wrapped in a baby's blanket from the hospital, but it had her mom's scent on it and her litter's scent. Jessie and I got really emotional." 

Choosing the perfect name was emotional, too. 

"My grandmother is from Korea and Mandu is a Korean dumpling. So we call her our little dumpling," said Martz. 

Leigh and Jessie are getting attention from all over. They're thrilled that Harry and Meghan also see honor in the cause of saving vulnerable animals and providing a loving, nurturing home. 

"It's really great for all of us," Martz said. 

You can adopt or foster any of the 4,000 rescued beagles. Click here to find out how.

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