100 tiny rescue dogs get flight path to forever homes

Dec 19 2017, 8:14 pm

More than a hundred small dogs and puppies facing a death sentence in U.S. high-kill shelters are getting a second chance at life thanks to a pilot-run organization that flies rescue pets to safety.

The Vancouver-based ‘Thank Dog I Am Out’ has partnered with California’s Wings of Rescue to hold a mass adoption in Bellingham, Washington on Saturday, October 4.

The pups, a mix of puppies, chihuahuas, small terriers, schnauzers and mixes/mutts, will be flown from California on a commercial jet flown by volunteer pilots and land at the Bellingham airport, where B.C. residents can drive down to meet them. Each dog has been handpicked and spent time in a foster home before making the trip, say organizers. All are under 30 pounds.

Five of the adoptable pups.

Five of the adoptable pups

Interested pet parents can apply and check out full profiles on each dog on the rescue’s website. All the dogs are spayed/neutered, up-to-date on their shots, including rabies, are micro-chipped and have the correct paperwork to cross back into Canada. The adoption cost is $200, with 100% of the money going back to Wings of Rescue.

Once they’ve applied on the rescue website, interested pet parents will receive a quick home visit within 48 hours. Once pre-approved, applicants are invited to Bellingham on Saturday to mingle with the dogs and see if one of the precious pups melts their hearts.


You can also put a hold on a dog that you’re particularly interested in, though it will be released in the afternoon to ensure a higher chance of adoption. There’s a foster plan in place for any dogs not placed on the weekend.

As a thank you for adopting, Thank Dog I Am Out will give you a new leash, harness and collar to get your furry friend home safely.


Speaking to Vancity Buzz, ‘Thank Dog’ founder Susan Patterson says the event is geared for British Columbians who have struggled to find small and medium-sized dogs through shelters, and don’t want to find a pet using unverified sources like Craigslist.

“Local shelters have done such a great job with their spay and neuter programs that they often have very few adoptable animals available,” she said, adding that many local rescues also have long waiting lists.

Patterson says every pup was saved from an overcrowded shelter. These facilities can receive up to 200 surrendered dogs each day — hence the huge rate of euthanization for very adoptable dogs.

Four of the adoptable pups.

Four of the adoptable pups

Patterson, whose disabled rescue dog Homer comes from a high-kill shelter in Washington State, said her experience led her to focus on the enormous homeless pet problem in California.

“We realize that there are dogs in B.C., primarily northern B.C., at risk, and appreciate all the work the rescues who focus on that area. I wish I could save them all,” she said.


Awaiting a new home in shelter.

Awaiting a new home in shelter

DH Vancouver StaffDH Vancouver Staff

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