WASHINGTON, D.C. (WRIC) — More than three weeks after a federal judge issued temporary restraining order against Envigo, barring the research organization from “breeding, selling, or otherwise dealing in beagles at the Cumberland Facility,” that same judge could decide Monday the fate of the Virginia operation and the dogs inside.

According to court documents, Envigo RMS, LLC is scheduled for a hearing at 1 p.m. with presiding Judge Norman K. Moon of the Western District of Virginia. Moon could decided whether to lift the temporary order or extend it.

The order was initially filed in may after the court concluded that “the Government has provided sufficient evidence that Envigo is engaged in serious and ongoing violations of the Animal Welfare Act, and that an immediate temporary restraining order must issue to put a halt to such violations pending further proceedings.”

This comes more than two months after Virginia Governor Glenn Youngkin signed five pieces of legislation to support animal welfare reform for dogs and cats that are bred and sold for experimental purposes.

According to a press release from the Office of the Governor, these laws, dubbed “the Beagle Bills” work to ensure that these animals are protected by Virginia’s animal cruelty laws. They clarify the inclusion of animals bred and sold for experimental purposes in these protections and give authorities the ability to take action when violations occur.

Over the years, 8News has reported extensively on the investigations and undercover operations that have revealed concerns about the treatment of thousands of beagles at Envigo’s Cumberland County facility, which are bred for research purposes. Several inspections from the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) have cited problems with the treatment of animals within, including dogs housed in excessive heat, kept away from food and living with decaying teeth.

“The USDA moves at a glacial pace. It still hasn’t taken any enforcement action against this facility, despite 73 violations, dozens of those being direct or critical,” People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) Senior Vice President of Cruelty Investigations Daphna Nachminovitch told 8News back in April. “Their license should have been suspended by now, and animals should’ve been confiscated.”

Nachminovitch oversaw a 2021 undercover investigation of the Envigo breeding facility, which found 5,000 beagle dogs and puppies confined to small, barren kennels and cages, 24 hours a day, seven days a week. More recently, on May 18, police executed a search warrant on the facility and seized 145 dogs, all of which were determined to have life-threatening injuries or illnesses. Hundreds of dogs had already been seized and rehoused before then.

“In addition to showing some transparency and accountability with record-keeping, forcing this facility to not euthanize so-called surplus animals, but make them available for adoption,” Nachminovitch said. “If these chronic violations of the federal Animal Welfare Act continue, this facility will have to leave our state.”