Athens Review, Athens, Texas

July 12, 2013

Volunteer pilots coming to save the day

National organization finds new home for local German shepherd in San Antonio

Joe Elerson
The Athens Review

Athens — A young German Shepherd dog named Dakota will be getting a new home in San Antonio from an organization called Pilots N Paws.

Volunteer pilot Tanya Card made the trip to Dyson Aviation at the Athens Municipal Airport around 9 a.m., Saturday morning.

Card said she will take Dakota to Devine, where another volunteer pilot will bring him to San Antonio.

The normal drive time from Athens to San Antonio can take between six-and-seven hours so Pilots N Paws is taking over the delivery for Dakota. In terms of the flight, it will take Card and another pilot two hours to get him to his destination.

Dakota is a 5-month-old German Shepherd that was saved from a lady whose neighbor was going to shoot him.

“There is a rescue shelter in San Antonio that is willing to take him and they specialize in German Shepherds,” Card said. “Most dogs do fantastic in the plane and most dogs that I carry, once we get airborne with the vibrations of the engine and the noise, puts most of them to sleep.”

Pilots N Paws is a 501c3 non-profit organization that is a meeting place for those who rescue, shelter or foster animals and volunteer pilots and plane owners willing to assist with the transportation of animals.

Card said their website at www.pilotsnpaws.org is an online forum that allows various parties to get together and make them aware of dogs that need help in extreme situations.

“What happens a lot of times is the dogs don't have a place to go in their local communities for whatever reason and they will head out to rescues across the country,” Card said.

Today the organization has 3,168 pilot volunteers and 10,551volunteers across the country to help in the effort.

“It is a matter of letting people know that there is help out there and these flights are done for free,” Card said. “These flights are done to help the dogs that can not help themselves.”

If you would like to help in this effort, you can foster an animal or donate in support of the Henderson County Humane Society.