Recently, four gorgeous dogs went on the freedom ride of ALL freedom rides. 18 months ago we received a call asking for our assistance on a cruelty case with the Pennsylvania State Police. In the middle of the night our founders Brad Childs and Jonathan Plesset mobilized a small team to deploy into a very rural area. What we found upon arrival still haunts us to this day. Over a few acres of land, every few hundred feet, dogs were chained to the ground. No food, no water, just sad eyes and the horror of seeing chains dug into each dogs throats. They were skin and bones. It was endless, every time we thought we had found them all another one was spotted. Corporal Michael Spada and his team of troopers had the same stunned look that fell over our faces. How could anyone do this? Every time we freed one of the dogs they licked our faces. We hugged them, we kissed them, and we cried with them.

Early this week Corporal Spada reached out to us with the message we had been waiting for the past 18 months. Some of these dogs are ready for the next step in a long process of recovery. Many dogs from cruelty cases have had very little of the human contact which they so desperately desire. For the past 18 month they were taught how to be loved the same way we all love our pets. The worst tragedy is that dogs LIVE to love people, and what breaks our hearts is that they even grow to love those who hurt them. Today the dogs are in the hands of capable fosters. They will teach them about basic things like toys, belly rubs, treats, fetch. These dogs will get to love and be loved, which is all they ever really wanted to do. They can be helped, they can be rehabilitated, and with the right owner, they can thrive.

The circle was completed when our Executive Director Mary Kennedy Withrow and Land Captain Dennis Bayne once again loaded four of them onto the PAART Landplane. Their second trip was different. Full of life, happy, healthy, each one on their second journey with the PAART team. We are so very privileged to again see these beautiful dogs and help them on the next phase of their lives. They will never to be harmed again. Thank you to Corporal Michael Spada and the Pennsylvania State Police for removing these dogs from the horror in which they were living and thank you to those of you who were with us that night. We will never forget.

This mission was done in honor of PAART’s own Mary Kennedy Withrow and Brad Childs. Both of them held a competition to see who could raise more money for PAART on their Birthdays this past week. Over $3000.00 was raised. Great work you two and Happy Birthday. Thanks to all of you who contributed, and to all of you who support us in so many ways.