Dane County prosecutes animal rescue instead of animal abuse

Ridglan beagle rescue trial

March 18-24, 2024

On March 18, three activists go on trial for rescuing 3 dogs from Ridglan Farms. 

UPDATE: ALL CHARGES WERE DROPPED!  All events continue as planned and now we’ll have more time to do actions all week instead of sitting in a courtroom – Let’s Gooooooo! 

Join us for an inspiring week of action to protest the injustice of prosecuting animal rescue instead of animal abuse

There are two registrations, depending on the days you choose to attend; please register with DXE for Monday-Friday events and register with Dane4Dogs for Saturday-Sunday events. Both links are below!

Schedule of Events 

Subject to Change, be sure to check frequently for the latest information as dates and times may change.

Monday, March 18 – Friday, March 22

Weekday events are hosted by Direct Action Everywhere, latest schedule available at www.dxe.io/faq register at www.dxe.io/ridglan


Saturday, March 23

Location: Gates of Heaven Synagogue (in James Madison Park) 302 E Gorham St, Madison, WI 53706. Dogs are not allowed in the Synagogue, but it is reserved for human attendees to warm up, use bathrooms, make signs, etc.

Parking: We recommend parking at the Capitol Square North Garage at 218 E Mifflin St, Madison, WI 53703.

  • 1pm-3:30pm: Envigo Beagle Reunion.
    • Everyone is welcome to attend, this is a family-friendly and pet-friendly event! Meet beagles that were rescued from Envigo, learn about their stories, their struggles, and their triumphs.
    • Dogs must be licensed in the city where they live, please bring your dog license with you if your city requires one. Dane4Dogs will provide City of Madison day permits for all dogs at check-in, which is required for all dogs in parks.
    • Check-in at the Gates of Heaven Synagogue. The dogs will socialize outside on the grassy lawn.
    • We will have patio heaters, but dress for cold, windy weather.
    • You will have the option of joining the march or remaining at the Synagogue and playing doggy games! 
  • 2pm-3:30pm: Dog Defenders March.
    • Join us on an inspiring and upbeat march to show legislators that Wisconsin residents want them to ban research puppy mills and support the right to rescue!
    • Meet at the Gates of Heaven Synagogue.
    • Bring your signs or come early (1pm) and make ones with supplies we provide and say hello to the Envigo dogs.
    • The tail of the march will be designated a quiet(ish) space for dogs or humans with noise sensitivities.
    • We will start at the Gates of Heaven Synagogue and will march up N. Hamilton St to the Capitol, around Capitol Square, and back to the Gates of Heaven Synagogue.
    • We will stop at each corner of the Capitol for brief speak outs by residents and activists.
  • 3:30pm Joint Group Photo and Wrap Up. Everyone will meet back at the Synagogue (outside) to take a photo of the Envigo beaglers and marchers and wrap up our historic day!

Sunday, March 24

Location: Hamptons of Hilldale Community Room, 205 N Segoe Rd, Madison, WI 53705.

Parking: Street parking is readily available, or there is visitor parking on Regent St.

  • 9am-12pm Community Outreach.
    • Meet at the Hamptons of Hilldale Community Room.
    • We will divide up into small groups and spread out across the city. Each group will have at least one experienced volunteer.
    • We will be showing Dane County residents videos of the research puppy mill and dog experimentation industry, and offering information and education to those who are interested. In our experience, residents are often receptive and want to help stop it. This will be a great opportunity to invite them to our afternoon event to take action for dogs! 
  • 12pm-1pm Lunch.
    • We will return to the Hamptons of Hilldale Community Room for lunch provided by Dane4Dogs. Lunch will be vegan and there will be a gluten-free option.
  • 1pm-3pm Take Action for Dogs.
    • Wondering what YOU can do to help dogs in laboratories? This is it! This is your opportunity to take tangible action for dogs with our help! We will provide flyers you can mail to your legislators with a personal note, we will help you write Letters to the Editor, write a song, a poem, or come up with your own unique way you can help dogs suffering in research puppy mills or laboratories. Leave feeling inspired and energized, with new connections and ideas for our way ahead!
    • This will also take place at the Hamptons of Hilldale Community Room.

Thousands of Dogs Suffer, 3 Escape. Which is the crime?

If you ask the Dane County District Attorney, holding thousands of dogs in cramped cages with wire mesh floors and no sunlight is not a crime. Selling puppies as young as 7 weeks old for painful, cruel experiments that end in premature death is not a crime. But according to the Dane County DA, rescuing 3 lucky dogs from these horrific conditions is a felony and providing them with veterinary care and loving homes is worthy of prosecution. 

Many adult dogs are kept in two-level, stacked enclosures constructed of metal fencing and mesh flooring (floor area: approximately 8 SqFt, 2’ x 4’)


ridglan puppy mill farm for animal testing

A number of adult dogs in the facility were displaying prominent stereotypical behaviors; such as circling, pacing, and wall bouncing.