Jeff Bennett landed his private plane, adorned with pawprints on its nose, at the North County general aviation airport on Tuesday, a full cargo of squirming puppies jammed behind his seat.
Bennett was flying his 5,000th rescued animal mission since he became affiliated 10 years ago with Pilots N Paws, a nonprofit group that flies needy animals to new homes or assists in their rescues.
“It’s very rewarding,” said Bennett, who lives in the Florida Keys, makes several rescue flights a month and has flown sea turtles, a kinkajou and snakes to new homes.
In conjunction with A Second Chance for Puppies and Kittens, Bennett picked up an a female Australian shepherd mix, her 4-week-old puppies and crates full of other small puppies from an Alabama shelter, described as having a “high-kill rate” by organizers of A Second Chance.
After the flight, Bennett carried the pups to a waiting van, where a foster group will take them to its facility, have them checked over and then put them up for adoption starting Saturday.
“We’ve already had them wormed and checked out and will arrange for them to be spayed and neutered,” said Ruth Douthitt.
Douthitt said the older puppies will be put up for adoption on Saturday at PetSmart in Legacy Place, Palm Beach Gardens and in Wellington. The mother dog will stay with her pups for a few more weeks.
For more information, visit http://www.pilotsnpaws.org/about/ and http://www.asecondchancerescue.org/.