MAGGIE: the dog who changed my life

MAGGIE: the dog who changed my life
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Monday, November 2, 2009

Pilots N Paws Saves Innocent Animals From Euthanasia

Information taken from Pilots N Paws website with permission
All photos from Pilots N Paws Website

Do you know about Pilots N Paws? They transport large numbers of animals to safety from "kill" shelters to non-kill shelters, rescue groups, foster homes, or a forever home. They do the noble work of saving large numbers of animals regularly who are on the brink of being euthanized.

Pilots N Paws have identified three serious issues that adversely affect animals in our country.
The first and most important issue is that about 4,000,000 animals or more are euthanized annually in the United States. This would not be the case if there were more and better spay and neuter programs and laws regarding owners’ responsibility for their animals.

The second issue is that because the problem is primarily regional a lot of these innocent animals could find permanent “forever” homes if they could be transported from high kill regions to areas with homes available. To accomplish this Pilots N Paws desperately needs more pilots to help with transports.

The final issue is that Pilots N Paws feels that while aviation has proven to be a successful way to transport animals to safety, general aviation in this country is threatened. See their website at for more details on this issue.

"It is truly the best of humanity working hand in hand to save these animals from euthanasia along with other remarkable stories such as service dogs, therapy dogs, two pups coming to the U.S. ... who were adopted by American Soldiers, just on and is extremely rewarding and heartwarming."
Debi Boies, Co-Founder, Pilots N Paws

The Pilots N Paws Team

To transport many animals to safety is a large undertaking, and it involves shelters, rescues, foster homes for animals and pilots. Each will play a role in the success of a rescue mission and each must commit to its success.

At least three parties will make up each “team” participating in a rescue. The starting point is the sending shelter or rescue. They will dedicate themselves to making one or more animals available to be transported to safety. They will pair up with the receiving rescue, shelter, or adoptive home. These two parts of the team will be central to the event. Ideally the receiving party should be no greater than 300 miles in a straight line from the starting shelter because the majority of the planes that will be used will be able to do a transport of that distance. Anything beyond that distance is likely to eliminate some types of planes, making it more difficult to find a pilot willing to do the transport. However, if the distance has to be greater all is not lost, it just narrows down the number of pilots that will be willing to consider the transport. If the distance gets much greater than 300 miles then Pilots N Paws encourages the shelter to locate an intermediate shelter, rescue, or foster, and treat the transport as a relay with additional start and end points.

Pilots N Paws asks that if you are a potential receiving shelter, rescue group, or foster who is willing to participate in any way, that you contact shelters, rescues or fosters in high kill areas and offer to receive the animals that are pulled for the Pilots N Paws rescue. If you only want dogs or even specific breeds of dogs let them know, but don’t remain silent. Having people available to receive the animals rescued is critical.

The final part of the three part team will be the pilot(s). Once the sending and receiving rescues have joined, pilots will be able to identify that transport as one they will volunteer to do.
See the Pilots N Paws website and form for more specific details for how the team is set up.

The Pilots N Paws Website and Discussion Forum

Here's how it works. The Pilots N Paws website is a meeting place for those who rescue, shelter or foster animals, and pilots and plane owners willing to assist with the transportation of animals. Pilots N Paws do not coordinate the volunteers who provide rescue, shelter & foster services, nor do they arrange these services. They do provide the environment for those involved to come together in a common place and arrange or schedule rescue flights, overnight foster care or shelter and all other related activities.

If you participate you are encouraged to check the discussion board daily at for new listings for the purposes of volunteering or assisting in efforts to save animals. This is where information about transports is publicly exchanged. Then an entire transport can be set up and all necessary information to successfully accompish the goal can be shared. This is where you can volunteer your efforts if you see how you can fill a need. All who participate in the discussion board are working for a common goal.

There are links to general information that is specific to pilots or those involved in the sheltering or rescue, and Pilots N Paws requests that these be respected and used just for those purposes.

Posting for a transport is the key to success. Transport needs must be posted as soon as possible and the sending & receiving shelters, and the pilot(s) must team up to handle and coordinate their own transports and media coverage. The posting must be in a specific format. Please visit Pilots N Paws at or the forum at for instructions and examples.


Pilots N Paws always needs more pilots. They are a 501C3, so portions of a pilot's flights are considered a charitable donation, says co-founder Deborah Boies. Pilots willing to do an animal rescue transport can use the postings to find a transport that suits their abilities. See Pilots N Paws website for details and instructions. Commercial airlines have and can offer a great service to the transporting of rescue animals. Pilots N Paws invites and encourages other airline employees who are willing and able to provide travel for rescues to participate in this program. Interested airlines and pilots can visit Pilots N Paws and can learn more about regulations of shipping pets on their airlines and on the situation that general aviation pilots are facing at


Please visit Pilots N Paws website to see the abundant news coverage they have received for their incredible animal rescue missions.

Thank you Pilots N Paws for the amazing service you do for the animals and bringing together the people who want to help and participate!

"Spay and neuter is our mantra as well as adopt a pet in need." -- Debi Boies, Co-Founder, Pilots N Paws

Posted By: Dawn Kairns

Author of MAGGIE: the dog who changed my life


Monica said...

Hi Author
Your blog like a complete pet world. You have great work. keep it up

Dawn Kairns, Author of MAGGIE the dog who changed my life said...

Thanks so much for you kind words, Monica. Looks like your blog also shares good pet information. Nice to hear from you.