With everything that’s going on, we figured that it was time for some good news. Southwest Airlines has just flown a plane full of shelter animals out of Houston, Texas. Check out this adorable video of cats and dogs taking flight!
— Helen Woodward (@HWAC) September 5, 2017
About 80 orphaned dogs (and cats!) were flown in a Southwest plane from Houston to San Diego, California. The flight was donated by Southwest to help animals stranded in overcrowded shelters in Houston. Crates were loaded into the cabin of the plane by volunteers from Southwest and various other animal rescue groups, making sure that the felines and pooches were carefully strapped in for their journey.
Pet shelters in Texas have been overcrowded ever since Hurricane Harvey hit, as many pet owners have been displaced by the storm. Many shelters have also been devastated by Hurricane Harvey and have no electricity or supplies.
The move helped to relieve overcrowded shelters and free up space that is desperately needed, giving hope to these animals. The Helen Woodward Animal Center (HWAC) is one animal rescue group that helped to organize the move, taking in dogs and cats at their facility in Rancho Santa Fe. Four of their medical professionals went to Houston to help load animals onto the plane. Upon arrival, the HWAC team spent hours helping to unload the pets and giving them their necessary medical exams. The dogs and cats have settled, and some of them are already available for adoption! If you’re interested in adopting one of these shelter animals, head on over to https://animalcenter.org/adopt-a-pet.
“There are shelters that have been devastated by Hurricane Harvey, without electricity, without supplies,” said CEO Mike Arms. The Helen Woodward Animal Center worked with the Texas rescue group, Operation Pets Alive! It’s their efforts that have helped numerous cats and dogs who had no place to go. These pets were suddenly facing euthanasia simply because their shelters didn’t have the resources to support them.
And San Diego isn’t the only place that has stepped up to help. A charity group called Wings of Rescue flew 180 dogs and cats to Waukegan, IL out of Texas. Wings of Rescue is currently planning more flights for hundreds of animals in Florida, as Hurricane Irma is expected to displace many more dogs in shelters. Their mission is to “fly them home” and to get dogs out of shelters with high-kill rates so that they can find their forever homes.
It’s through the efforts of volunteers and organizations like Wings of Rescue and the Woodward Animal Center that these dogs and cats are getting a second chance. If you’d like to support them, consider making a donation here or here. But an easy way to lend a hand and help out is to foster a dog or cat to help relieve some of the pressure on these shelters. If you’ve got space and a little bit of time, you can help make a difference and help these pawsome creatures find loving homes.