Sometimes, It Takes A Village To Rescue A Dog

That old adage certainly holds true when people are moved to such a good cause as saving a dog. On Friday, April 12th, our team at No Dog Left Behind, the participation of Pennsylvania SPCA Officers Nicole Wilson and  Jason Martinez, and Adopt a Sato, and most importantly the charitable deeds of the deceased Gerald Luptak all took part in an extraordinary rescue that began with taking two dogs from life in near-captivity in Puerto Rico to a friendly home in Pittsburgh. No Dog Left Behind was able to participate in the final leg of the journey, to help complete their journey from danger to safety. What a better way to bring in 412-Day?

A Very Special Note:

We wanted to take the moment to really and truly express how grateful our team is to the generosity of Gerald Luptak and his family for opening up their hearts to animals in need. Mr. Luptak – family man, airline mechanic, dog-lover, and all-around exceptional person – through his support we were able to make this mission. We thank you and your family for your support.

A Background on Our Rescue Mission:

When looking at dogs in difficult situations, our furry passenger on Friday’s Air Mission certainly had more than his share. In the Puerto Rican climate, Regalo had been chained outside for 12 years, with limited access only to the things in the small radius of his post. In this environment, the tan colored Labrador Regalo began to develop a tumor on one of his front feet. The tumor grew to a significant size and it had to be removed, along with a number of toes from that paw.

This is not a story of complete sadness, rather lightness coming through the dark. The fortunate thing to come from the amputation of his toes is that this was the final straw to get Regalo released from his leashed captivity.

After 12 years, knowing nothing outside of his leashed in area Regalo was heading to the mainland for a chance at freedom and a chance at a loving family. He was not to be alone. Joined by his 6-year-old friend Sampson, they were off on their trip that would end in the Pittsburgh area, via Miami and Philadelphia.

The Trip:

  • Puerto Rico to Miami: 1,020 miles
  • Miami to Philadelphia: 1,013 miles
  • Philadelphia to Pittsburgh: 330 miles

For a dog that never knew more than a 10-foot radius around his leash’s stake, the 2,000 plus mile trip put him a world away from everything Regalo has known. On his flight in from Miami to Philadelphia, he had to be transported to the airport that would take the two dogs on their final leg of the trip to Pittsburgh.

The No Dog Left Behind team got assistance from the PSPCA Officer, Jason Martinez, to transport Regalo and Sampson from Cargo City to the Philadelphia Airport to board the No Dog Left Behind plane.

A New Home in Pittsburgh:

The final leg of the trip, operated by No Dog Left Behind pilot Pete Lehmann and after the 300+ mile air journey, these two dogs – who have been through so much but still had little dog-smiles on their faces – will now call home.

Thanks to the great people at Adopt a Sato, these two dogs will now have a loving and caring home.