Nightly News | November 24, 2011
>>> and finally tonight, dog lovers, this one's for you. we're thinking we may gain a few more dog lovers after you see this next story. thanks to a special holiday delivery at l.a.x., dozens of dogs who spent their whole lives trapped in cages are getting their first taste of freedom. they flew halfway around the world to get here in search of new homes and some new best friends too this thanksgiving. here's nbc's miguel almaguer.
>> reporter: just in time for the holiday, a special arrival at l.a.x.
>> okay, baby doll .
>> reporter: 40 beagles rescued from a research lab in spain, headed to foster homes in los angeles for a second chance at life.
>> these dogs have lived their entire lives being poked, prodded, opened up, cut open, sewn, and now they get to be free.
>> reporter: but these beagles and the dogs rescued before them have never known what freedom is.
>> everybody is loaded and we are headed somewhere where we can run free for a minute.
>> reporter: the rescued beagles have lived life as a science project rather than family pet. their previous home, cages in a lab. most have never seen the sun.
>> opening the door for what's about to be their first step ever on the grass or outside.
>> reporter: but that first step is a scary one.
>> come on, big boy .
>> reporter: timid paws finally on solid ground.
>> in the beginning, they didn't know what anything was. they didn't know what a toy was, they didn't know how to go for a walk.
>> reporter: but the beagle freedom project helped change all that. these little guys will spend the next couple of weeks here until they're medically cleared. then they'll be adopted out.
>> it's such an amazing thanksgiving. we're going to have fun, aren't we?
>> reporter: thankful families caring for grateful dogs together this holiday taking the first step toward a new life. miguel almaguer, nbc news, los angeles .