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Paws Across the Pacific: 600 Shelter Pets Airlifted Out of Hawaii in the Largest Pet Rescue Flight in History

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Over 600 adoptable dogs and cats were flown from Hawaii to the U.S. mainland, making Paws Across the Pacific the largest pet rescue flight in history. The healthy and loving pets were moved from overcrowded pet shelters on five islands across Hawaii and flown to shelters in Washington state, Oregon, Idaho, and Montana where they’ll available for adoption into loving forever homes.

Image003Credit Greatergoodcharities
Image | Greater Good Charities
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Image | Greater Good Charities

Pet shelters in Hawaii are in a COVID-19 crisis. Normal operations have been affected by months of shut down, economic downturn, limited hours, and routine flights to mainland halted,” said Liz Baker, CEO of Greater Good Charities. “The Paws Across the Pacific flight is urgently needed to make space in Hawaii’s shelters for at-risk pets who otherwise wouldn’t be able to receive necessary care to survive.”

On the evening of October 28, Paws Across the Pacific boarded more than 600 shelter dogs and cats on a chartered Hercules C-130 plane making stops on Kauai, Oahu, Maui, and Hawaii islands. 

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Image | Greater Good Charities

Hawaii shelter partners included the Kauai Humane Society, Hawaiian Humane Society, Lanai Cat Sanctuary, Hawaii Island Humane Society, Maui Humane Society,  Aloha `Ilio Rescue, and Kauai SPCA.  The Hercules C-130 with the over 2,500 furry paws arrived at Seattle’s Boeing Field in the late morning on October 29, where pet shelters and rescue groups picked up many of the adoption hopefuls. 120 more continued their journey to Walla Walla and Coeur d’Alene.

Among the dogs hoping to find their forever families were:

Phyllis and Moki

Phyllis & Moki | Credit Kauai Humane Society

Phyllis and her sister Moki were surrendered together at the beginning of June. They’re both 10 years old and as sweet as can be. They are favorites to go out on field trips, good with kids, but they didn’t have any local adoption interest in the 4.5 months they were at KHS.


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Reita | Credit Kauai Humane Society

Reita came to Kauai Humane Society after being gored by a wild pig.  She was probably a hunting dog, which are very common on Kauai.  Major surgery was required to clean and repair the wound which is now fully healed! She is thriving in foster care, but would do best as an only dog since that incident. 

Sadie Lou

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Sadie Lou | Credit Kauai Humane Society

Sadie Lou came to KHS with horribly infected skin and almost no hair! She desperately wants to trust people, and has made huge progress during her time at KHS in this area.  Life has been hard for her, but she’s ready for her forever home! 

For information on how to adopt these animals, contact PAWS, The NOAH Center, Seattle Humane, the Humane Society of Skagit Valley, Kitsap Humane, Oregon Humane, Southwest Washington Humane, Kootenai Humane Society, Seattle Area Feline Rescue (SAFR), Tracs, Spokanimal, Blue Mountain Humane Society and the Embrace a Discarded Pet Society.

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Image | Hawai’i Emergency Management Agency

The Paws Across the Pacific airlift was conducted in coordination with the Hawaii Veterinary Medical Association to ensure the safety and health of pets on the flight. In addition to flying pets to their new families, Greater Good Charities and The Animal Rescue Site are providing enrichment and critical medical supplies to assist the shelters and the sheltered pets of Hawaii.

Paws Across the Pacific was made possible with support from the John R. Peterson Foundation, The Animal Rescue Site, Banfield Foundation, VCA Pet Charities, Tito’s Handmade Vodka, the Petco Foundation, Royal Canin and Healthy Paws Pet Insurance & Foundation. To learn more about Paws Across the Pacific visit: greatergood.org

About Greater Good Charities
Greater Good Charities is a 501(c)(3) national nonprofit organization, with a 100/100 rating on Charity Navigator, that works to amplify the good in the world to improve the health and well-being of people, pets, and the planet. Since 2007, Greater Good Charities has given over $300 million in cash and in-kind grants to over 5,000 charitable partners worldwide and funded projects in 121 countries. To date, Greater Good Charities has provided $18 million in support for COVID-19 disaster-relief, including cash grants, in-kind supplies, and programmatic support. To learn more about how Greater Good Charities is amplifying the good across the globe, please visit greatergood.org or follow us on FacebookInstagram or Twitter 

About Wings of Rescue Wings of Rescue is a donation-based charity flying large-scale transports of at-risk shelter pets from overcrowded shelters and disaster areas to brick and mortar shelters where there is empty kennel space and where no local shelter pets are displaced by the flights.  Since it began to “Let The Fur Fly” in 2012, Wings of Rescue has flown more than 40,000 pets to safety. To donate, please visit www.wingsofrescue.org/donate

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