Southside Daily reports that Sali Gear, founder of Island Dog Rescue in Virginia Beach, has evacuated close to 40 dogs from Puerto Rico due to the continued earthquakes.
And with the support of partners like Yorktown-based, Village Dog Resource, to foster and rehome the dogs once they land in the continental U.S., Gear said she plans to do it again for over 50 more dogs in the coming weeks.
“I need a place to put dogs so the partnership is really a win-win,” she said. “My niche is transportation, selecting, and vetting dogs, they know they’re getting dogs with solid medical treatment.”
Village Dog Resource is advertising at least nine of the pups that are available for adoption but there are others who after surviving back-to-back natural disasters and travel abroad, just aren’t ready yet.
Julia Kay operates the foster program and described “Simon,” who she said was already shy but “didn’t handle the transport very well.”
Since Dec. 28, earthquakes and aftershocks up to a magnitude 6.4 have continued to shake the ground in Puerto Rico with the most recent measuring a magnitude 4.5 on Monday, according to the U.S. Geological Survey.
“A message from one of my rescuers…her voice was cracking and broken and you hear her say ‘we’re scared, we’re stressed, I don’t know what I would do if I had to leave my home and my dog,’” Gear said. “We’re helping people rehome their dogs that they can’t take care of.”
Kay said Village Dog Resource is not only looking for adopters but as more animal refugees come in, the organization is also looking for volunteers who can foster and transport pets, contingent on a satisfactory home visit, veterinary “background check,” and application.
“All adoptions come with a built-in week-long trial period at your home. We never want anyone keeping a dog ‘just because,’ we aim for perfection,” according to the organization’s website.