Dogs of different breeds and sizes, cubs and adults, faced a bleak future in animal shelters Puerto Rico, where chronic overcrowding results in the sacrifice of many of them.
But on Wednesday, 205 abandoned dogs were brought to the united States as part of an operation organized by defenders of animals, who work to relieve the burden on shelters puerto ricans.
“The shelters of Puerto Rico do not have another option,” said Kimberly Alboum, the humane Society of the united States. “Run out of space and unfortunately have to sacrifice animals in order to have more space. It is heartbreaking for the team, and devastating, because those animals could be adopted”, he added.
The island has struggled with overpopulation of dogs for years due to various factors, such as shelter with little funding and low rates of sterilization.
It is common to see groups of “data”, or stray dogs, roaming in the communities of the island. A sector of the coast near the town of Yabucoa, which was made famous by the number of abandoned and abused dogs became known as “Dead Dog Beach”.
Some activists have been working on the problem and was told that there are signs of improvement. Christina Beckles, founder of the Project Sato with headquarters on the island, said that there are fewer dogs that end up on the beach due to a campaign to sterilize in Yabucoa.
But there have also been setbacks, such as a deep economic crisis that causes many residents to abandon the island and leave their pets.
The rescued dogs were taken to veterinarians and transferred from the San Juan airport in two planes by a group called Wings of Rescue, and landed in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. The dogs who traveled on one of the planes remained in shelters in the state. The other aircraft traveled to North Carolina, from where they would be taken to several shelters, including the Animal Haven in New York city.