Pup, pup and away
Pilot group to fly Waco shelter dogs to Idaho for adoption.

By Kristin Hoppa

Waco Tribune-Herald
July 13, 2020

Ryker and Tori wasted no time mixing it up Monday as they burst in to Waco Animal Shelter play yard, running and roughhousing with each other.

The young, mixed-breed dogs need more wide-open spaces than the shelter kennels can give them, and they stand a good chance of getting it as they board a plane to Idaho on Wednesday.

They are among 10 Waco dogs hitching a ride to the Northwest with an animal rescue group Dog Is My CoPilot, Inc.

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Laredo animals saved from death as 104 flown to new homes

By Jorge A. Vela

LMT Online
July 10, 2020

In the early morning hours of Thursday, a major operation was ongoing in the city’s airport to save the lives of more than a 100 animals.

A total of 54 dogs and 50 cats were saved from a local animal shelter when a plane came to the Laredo International Airport at around 4 a.m. on Thursday morning to retrieve the animals and take them to a better home.

In a first-of-its-kind partnership between the City of Laredo Animal Care Services (LACS), American Pets Alive and Dog is My Copilot, the rescue mission was successful as all of these animals were flown to bases and adoption centers in Utah, Colorado and Wyoming, where new homes were waiting for them by pre-adoption chosen individuals.

With the shelter having approximately 200-220 animals to take care of, the help by the two participating organizations provided some relief to the center as about half of its population was taken to another area of the country where these animals will find their homes.

“In order to increase our life relief rate, we partnered up with these organizations to provide these animals a better life, and they could find their forever home,” said City of Laredo Animal Care Services Department Operations Manager Karina Elizondo.

Elizondo noted that the shelter was at full capacity just a few days ago. That is a problem that would have caused many of these animals that were rescued to remain at risk of being euthanized as they had not found a home in weeks or months.

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Pet adoption puzzle
With its own pet population controlled, Jackson Hole comes to the aid of other animals.

By Melissa Cassutt

Jackson Hole News & Guide
June 24, 2020

The 8-month old shepherd/mastiff thumped her tail and looked out of her crate as the tailgate opened on the gray GMC Denali. The staff of the Animal Adoption Center peered in, greeting the big dog with coos and a few “good girls.”

Her transport, loaded with puppies rescued by the Lander Pet Connection, arrived on a day in late May. Two litters of puppies also traveled in the vehicle, five tiny furballs snuggled in a lump with another puppy next to the driver for extra comfort on the three-hour drive.

Not much was known about the big dog, named Brit, which is often the case with dogs moving through the shelter system. What was known is her future was uncertain where she was found roaming around in Fremont County, where she was seen as a bit of a big nuisance.

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Big Dog Transport Marks a Semblance of Normalcy at Mountain Humane

By Karen Bossick

Eye on Sun Valley
May 26, 2020

The Big Dog that set wheels down at Atlantic Aviation Monday night didn’t have stewardesses decked out in face masks handing out pretzels. Nor were any of its passengers wearing seatbelts.

And the 12 who got off in Sun Valley had no idea that they had just landed in doggie heaven.

But Annie McCauley beamed as she peered inside the cages, each boasting one or two cute furry faces with quizzical looks.

“This makes me feel like I’m back to doing important work,” said the executive director of Mountain Humane.

On Monday Captain Blue and his Dog is My CoPilot plane picked up 74 dogs at a shelter in El, Paso Texas. He dropped some off at to Corgipalooza Rescue & Rehab, the Newberg Animal Shelter and One Tail at a Time in Portland before putting his wheels down in Sun Valley.

He’d fly the rest home to PAWS of Jackson Hole.

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Abilene Animal Shelter dogs & cats flown out to shelters in need of pets for adoption

Big Country Homepage
June 12, 2020

ABILENE, TX — The City of Abilene’s Animal Services has teamed up with the nonprofit organization Dog Is My Copilot to relocate more than 60 animals to shelters experiencing a shortage of adoptable pets.

Abilene Animal Services staff and volunteers were at the Abilene Animal Shelter as early as 2 a.m. Friday, June 12th to begin preparing and gathering dogs and cats for their big travel day. By 5 a.m., the crated animals were on their way to Abilene Aero, and by 7 a.m., everyone was in the air, flying toward their new homes.

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99 homeless Odessa dogs take a flight to their new home
Dog-Rescue-R-Us is a non-profit rescue group that started in January of 2019 and has cut down on the number of animals the shelter is having to put down.
By Tate Owen

June 8, 2020

ODESSA, TX — West Texas has been dealing with an overpopulation of homeless animals for years.

Last year, the Odessa Animal Shelter put down over 3,000 animals.

Dog-Rescue-R-Us is a non-profit rescue group that started in January of 2019 and since then they’ve made a huge dent in the number of animals the shelter is having to put down.

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Green River Animal Control, Red Desert Humane Society Work Together to Rescue Animals
By Olivia Kennah

Sweetwater Now
June 8, 2020

GREEN RIVER — Over the past 10 years, the Green River Animal Control (GRAC) has made it their mission to improve their ability to rescue animals; and by doing so they’ve created a rescue network where they can work with other agencies to ensure animals find good forever homes.

Lydia Holmes, Animal Control Officer (ACO), started with the GRAC about eight years ago and has worked tirelessly to make connections with rescue organizations across the state, as well as other states, to help rescue as many animals as possible.

“Where we started 10 years ago to now at Animal Control, rescue, transfer, and relocation has taken off,” GRAC Supervisor Tracy Wyant said. “That’s 100 percent because of Lydia. Every shelter needs a Lydia.”

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Rescue at 15,000 Feet
By Leslie Garisto Pfaff

Rutgers University Alumni Association
February 26, 2020

As founder of the nonprofit Dog Is My CoPilot, Peter Rork uses his Cessna Caravan turboprop plane to ferry dogs and cats from overcrowded shelters in which they face euthanasia to shelters that have pledged never to kill an animal in their care. Since its formation in 2012, Dog Is My CoPilot has saved the lives of more than 13,000 animals, with Rork RC’74 at the helm and in the cockpit.

For 30 years, Rork practiced orthopedic surgery in Jackson Hole, Wyoming, a skier’s paradise, and loved it. “Being the knee guy in Jackson Hole was like dying and going to heaven for an orthopedic surgeon,” he says. But after three decades, he was tired of the grind and ready to retire. While others in his position might have opted for a life of golf (or trout fishing, for which Jackson Hole is also famous), Rork launched a second career in the air.

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Former Las Cruces shelter dog to be in Puppy Bowl XVI
By Jacqueline Devine

Las Cruces Sun News
January 29, 2020

LAS CRUCES — A former Las Cruces shelter dog is heading for the small screen after being drafted in this year’s Puppy Bowl XVI. It’ll air Sunday on Animal Planet before the evening’s big game.

Dracula is an adorable 6-month-old, standard bull terrier mix who was impounded at Animal Services Center of the Mesilla Valley as a stray along with her mom, Meena, and her brother Biggie, on July 9, 2019.

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Dog is my Copilot honored at Petco Foundation Lifesaving Awards
By Nicole Hamilton
November 9, 2019

JACKSON, Wyo. — On November 14, a local organization, Dog Is My CoPilot, will be honored along with six other organizations at the Petco Foundation’s Lifesaving Awards in San Diego, Calif.

Dog Is My CoPilot, which could also be referred to as one man with a small plane and a big heart, will be presented with the Love in Action Award. This award recognizes and celebrates an organization that put their love into action to save animals across the country.

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Giant polar bear of a dog inspires so many people to help him find a home
By Nicole Hamilton

Best Friends
October 30, 2019

These words are often attributed to the German poet Goethe: “Whatever you can do, or dream you can, begin it. Boldness has genius, power and magic in it.” They’re words Melissa Lipani just might have taken to heart the day she first saw Walter’s face.

How could she not? In one photo the pit bull and mastiff mix (who resembles a polar bear) looks tired and sad. That was taken the day he arrived at Animal Services Center of the Mesilla Valley (ASCMV) in Las Cruces, New Mexico. In the other, he looks happier. A kind smile lights up his face and his eyes reveal wisdom, along with a little playfulness.

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Dogs fly to new homes

August 15, 2019

JACKSON, WYO – Wednesday morning at 11:30am Peter Rork aka “Pilot Peter” founder and chief pilot of Dog is My Copilot, landed at the Driggs-Reed Memorial Airport, with him 44 dogs on an adventure for new homes. Peter is relocating the dogs from the Maricopa County Animal Care and Control center in Phoniex, AZ. Driggs was not his first or his last stop of the day today, first stop was in Utah where a receiving agency took 25 of the 69 dogs. Wednesday afternoon he was headed to Spokane, WA as his final destination on this relocation mission. Peter donates 100% of his time, flying 2 flights a week April through October.

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SA Dogs travel to find families in Colorado

KENS5 News San Antonio, June 6, 2019

Volunteers with San Antonio Pets Alive helped load several dogs this morning to be transported to Colorado to find forever homes.

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Dogs take flight in hopes to find new homes

CBS4 News El Paso, April 18, 2019

Dog Is My CoPilot (DIMC) will be transporting nearly 60 dogs on Thursday to new shelters in hopes they’ll find their forever home.

DIMC is partnering with Tails from the Shelter, a division of Uncaged Paws, Inc., who rescue dogs and cats from overcrowded New Mexico municipal shelters, and El Paso Animal Services in El, Paso, Texas to fly dogs from the overcrowded animal shelters to animal rescue groups in Idaho that have adopters waiting for them.

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Borderland shelter pets take flight to find their forever homes

KTSM 9 El Paso, April 18, 2019

Thursday morning 57 shelter dogs departed from the Las Cruces Airport in search of forever homes. The nonprofit organization called Dog Is My CoPilot flies shelter animals all over the country. Here in the Borderland, the shelters are all full. However, in Idaho, they have a low number of shelter animals, along with people eager to adopt.

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A Whimper in the Dark

Douglas Budget, October 25, 2018

Headlights from a Washington-bound transport van illuminated the roadway in the darkness along I-25 in the wee morning hours Saturday. Inside, Connie Bowen, Kammie Stone and Laura Barriga of Texas were on their way to Seattle in a cargo van. In the back, 47 dogs in kennels were on a ride from kill shelters in Texas to homes throughout the northwest and to the families who had adopted them.

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Special Rescue Mission A Huge Success!

KPAX 8 Montana, October 21, 2018

In the early morning on Saturday, October 20th a vehicle transporting 47 dogs from Texas heading to Montana and Washington was involved in a car accident in Douglas, Wyoming. The dogs that were left stranded needed immediate transport and Dog Is My CoPilot was grateful to be able to help carry out this rescue mission on Sunday, October 21.

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Flying to Furever Homes: Nonprofit that transports dogs by plane reaches a milestone: 10,000 animals moved.

Jackson Hole News & Guide, August 8, 2018

Hobbs, a sturdy, older chocolate Lab, is like most dogs. He likes table scraps and head scratches, and he never goes long without wagging his tail.

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50: Peter Rork, Dog is My CoPilot: Up in the Air for Animal Rescue & Welfare

Pawprint Animal Rescue Podcast, June 17, 2016

Peter Rork is Co-Founder and Chief Pilot for Dog is My CoPilot (DIMC). He and Co-Founder Judy Zimet have rescued over 4,000 dogs and cats by flying them from high kill shelters in places like California to the Pacific Northwest and Rocky Mountain regions.

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Dogs, Cats Fly To Colorado To Find New Homes

CBS4 News Denver

Nonprofits Fly Dogs and Cats to Colorado to Find Forever Homes

Dogs and cats in need of families got off a plane Sunday morning in Centennial. Officials hope those animals will be placed with people in Utah, Montana and Colorado.

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More than 40 Dogs to be Flown to Idaho to Find Forever Homes

The San Antonio Pets Alive!’s transport program provides an outlet for dogs facing euthanasia at city shelters.

“The real hero isn’t the guy flying the dogs to safety, it’s the people who walk into the shelter every single day and deal with those animals,” said Peter Rork, the pilot, founder and president of Dog is my Co-Pilot.

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San Antonio Homeless Dogs Flown Northwest for Adoption

Dr. Peter Rork, pilot and co-founder of Dog is my CoPilot, coordinates with San Antonio Pets Alive! staff members and volunteers as they put more than 40 former stray dogs on his Cessna bound for Idaho.

It was a bittersweet time Tuesday, just before dawn at Kelly Field Airport, for medical care technician Michael Belmarus.

Belmarus had to say goodbye to a chow mix named Aisling that he’d fostered for the past six weeks.

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Flying to a ‘Furever’ Home

Nonprofit brings animals from overcrowded shelters to the Wood River Valley

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‘Dog Is My CoPilot’: Taking Animal Rescue to New Heights

As often happens in life, tragedy turns into blessing. When Peter Rork’s wife passed away six years ago, her death gave the breath of life to thousands of dogs and cats which would otherwise have been euthanized.

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‘Dog Is My CoPilot’: Giving New Lives To San Antonio Strays

It’s the pre-dawn hours at Port San Antonio Kelly Field and the scramble is on.

The challenge is to fit 49 dogs in their kennels into a single engine plane, a Cessna Caravan.

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Flying Abandoned Animals to Safer Havens

“We fly animals — 80 percent dogs and 20 percent cats — from about 20 source shelters, where they are in danger of being euthanized because of lack of space, to some 62 receiving animal rescue organizations where these animals are more likely to be adopted.”

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Dr. Peter Rork, co-founder of Dog Is My CoPilot

Dr. Peter Rork—a retired orthopedic surgeon and pilot who co-founded Dog Is My CoPilot, an organization that flys shelter animals to different parts of the country, boosting their prospects of being adopted—recalls his lifelong love of flying, taking his first lessons at age 12.

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Pets lost in Hurricane Harvey fly out of state for new lease on life

Stranded after Hurricane Harvey, pets flown out of state for adoption.

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October 16, 2017- New Mexico shelter pets get second chance

October 16, 2017- Local non-profits fly abandoned pets 

October 12, 2017- A new leash on life for hurricane-hit pets

October 7, 2017- Dogs and cats from Texas arrive in Boise

October 6, 2017- Pets lost in Hurricane Harvey fly out of sate for new lease on life

October 6, 2017- Over 50 Hurricane Harvey animals find new homes in the northwest

October 2, 2017- Animals, Rescued From Hurricane Harvey

August 30, 2017- DIMC Story of flying Korean Meat Dogs to Idaho

August 26, 2017- 406 Bark- DIMC Magazine Article page 6

August 25, 2017 – Plane full of dogs rescued from kill shelters arrives in Billings

August 25, 2017- Homeless dogs get a second chance at finding a forever home

August 3, 2017- Rescued dogs, cats down to Colorado to find forever homes

August 3, 2017- Animal Rescue Organization Gives Dogs A Second Chance At Life

August 3, 2017- Rescue Dogs From South Plains Take “Flight for Life”

August 3, 2017- Dogs rescued from crowded NM shelters travel to forever home in Colo.

August 3, 2017- Dozens of dogs rescued by plane from high-kill shelters

August 3, 2017- Adoptable pets take flight to find home

June 21, 2017- Korean Dogs Avoid Ending Up On The Menu

June 14, 2017 – Dog Is My CoPilot helps 54 Texas canines get to new Idaho homes

June 13, 2017 – San Antonio volunteers send 54 dogs to homes in Idaho

June 13, 2017- Over 50 dogs from a San Antonio kill shelter land in Boise to find a forever home

June 13, 2017-  SAPA! Dogs Take Flight to ‘Forever’ Homes

June 5, 2017- “I like dogs better than most people I know”

June 2, 2017- Dogs rescued from S. Korean meat farm arrive in Boise

June 2, 2017 – More dogs pulled from the depths of the South Korean dog meat trade

June 2, 2017 – Twelve dogs rescued from South Korean backyard dog meat facility

May 15, 2017- PUP, PUP, PUP….AND AWAY!

May 12, 2017- Dogs Take To Air to Find New Homes

May 12, 2017- Pets Alive, Dog is My CoPilot and Atlantic Aviation Transport dogs from San Antonio to Idaho

May 12, 2017- Dozens of dogs taken to Idaho for better chance to find forever homes

April 19, 2017 – These animals flew out of Long Beach Airport for a chance at life, thanks to nonprofit

October 13, 2016 – Flying puppies make the life-saving trek to the heartland

October 13, 2016- Dog Is My CoPilot transports animals after natural disaster

October 7, 2016- Bakersfield shelter dogs flying to Idaho to find new homes

September 15, 2016- Shelter to house canine flood victims

September 10, 2016- Dogs Stranded after Louisiana Flood of 2016 flown west

September 9, 2016- Dog is My CoPilot flies dogs from Louisiana shelter to Hailey

September 9, 2016- Dogs in diaster zones have safely arrived in Idaho

September 8, 2016- Pilot flying dozens of shelter dogs out of disaster zone 

May 6, 2016 – Plane brings pups a brighter future

May 6, 2016 – Giant plane rescue saves dogs from high-kill shelters

May 5, 2016 – Unwanted pets find new homes in ‘dog-friendly’ Utah

May 4, 2016 – Nearly 100 rescue dogs flown to Colorado to find new homes

May 4, 2016 – 95 Rescued Animals Arrive In State’s Largest Airlift

April 12, 2016 – Pups on a plane: Man flies to save 49 furry friends

March 18, 2016 – Colorado rescue groups airlift Roswell, New Mexico dogs

October 20, 2015 – Denver Dog Resuer Taking Animals From SE NM

August 21, 2015 – 28 Chihuahuas from Arizona adopted in 90 minutes at Idaho adoption event

March 19, 2015 – New Mexico rescue dogs travel to forever homes in Utah and Colorado

March 18, 2015 – Group tries to save NM pups

March 16, 2015 – Exchange Dogs Fly Into Oakland

December 25, 2012 – UPDATE 2012: 161 ‘littles’ from California find homes in Montana

August 16, 2012 – Groups work together to find dog a new home

April 15, 2012 – Bingham County dogs head to new homes in Montana