Throughout North America when disaster strikes, Wings of Rescue is there to fly at-risk pets to safe havens and deliver humanitarian and veterinarian aid to the victims. When shelters become overcrowded and threaten to euthanize healthy, adoptable pets, Wings of Rescue flies in and transports at-risk shelter dogs, cats, and rabbits to safety at our network of shelter partners who have available kennel space and a waiting list of adopters.
We use the utmost care in selecting the pets we fly. First we make sure that the pet has truly been abandoned and has no one looking for them. The sending shelters must verify that the pet has passed his/her stray hold and is considered abandoned. In disasters we will not fly any pet until he/she has been held for 30 days – to make sure that his/her owner has had sufficient time to reclaim their pet. The last thing we want is to fly someone’s owned pet.
Wings of Rescue worked closely with the ASPCA to come up with the best medical protocols for the pets we transport. All dogs, including puppies with moms, must be vaccinated upon intake or at 4 weeks of age, whichever occurs first, with a modified live virus vaccine containing, at minimum, distemper, adenovirus, and parvovirus. In addition, all dogs must receive an intranasal vaccine containing Bordetella with parainfluenza.
All cats, including kittens with moms, must be vaccinated upon intake or at 4 weeks of age, whichever occurs first, with an injectable modified live virus vaccine containing, at minimum, panleukopenia, feline viral rhinotracheitis (herpesvirus), and feline calicivirus.
All pets must then be examined by a licensed veterinarian who verifies that the pet is healthy and his/her vaccinations meet the destination shelter’s state’s medical requirements. Then the pet is issued a health certificate.
The pets all travel on a pressurized plane in the same temperature controlled cabin with the flight crew. Our average flight covers 1,200 miles – and takes around 4 hours, as opposed to the two days it would take if the pets were driven. Consequently our precious arrive at their destinations quicker, less stressed and healthier than pets driven long distances – and the average length of stay in their new shelters is only 3 1/2 days from the time they are made available for adoption!