I've always thought that no matter where you go, there are tons of dogs just waiting to be adopted. I didn't realize just how limited in number dogs waiting to be adopted is in some area, versus how high it is in other areas!!
Because of this difference, programs have been formed that get pilots to fly shelter dogs from one city, where there is an abundance, to a city where more shelter dogs are needed for adoption!! What this means is that even more dogs get to find homes!!!
There are a lot of groups popping up to lead this movement, such as California-based Wings of Rescue or South Carolina-based Pilots N Paws. Basically, they recruit volunteer pilots who are willing to donate their time/fuel/planes, and then they help move the dogs around to shelters where they have a better chance of adoption!!
Most pups just sleep during the flight and overall very few have had any issues! Plus, flying them (rather than taking a ground alternative) is safe, faster, and less expensive! Some areas where small dogs (or big dogs) are more popular are "ordering in" dogs from other areas to help them get adopted since there is already a huge demand.
Considering the huge number of animals that end up euthanized each year if they can't get adopted, it's great to see that something is being done to help connect dogs with owners, no matter where the two may be!