Thursday, August 25, 2005

The Saga of Paddy and the Underdog Railroad

Reminiscent of the feel-good movies about lost pets trekking through the wilderness for hundreds of miles to finally arrive home safely (i.e. The Incredible Journey, et al), and alluding to the Underground Railroad, this LA Times article is an interesting read. It explores the problems of unwanted pets through the travels of the dog Paddy, from Tennessee to his new home in California.
Paddy's no show dog. He's a mid-size, aging brown mutt; shaggy, with white eye rings that give him a worried look, and a smell that's hard to ignore.

Dogs like Paddy abound at animal shelters across America. He was once a pound dog himself, back in Tennessee. But that was before.

Now he lives in California with a woman who saw him on the Internet and just had to have him. His 60-hour passage from east Tennessee to Silverado in the Orange County back country, involved a blues singer, a bartender, a retired orchestra conductor and 21 others who drove shifts across six states and four time zones to get him to what rescuers call a "forever home."

Most of those who transported Paddy never met his Tennessee rescuer, his new owner in California or each other. They were part of a vast, loose-knit movement known to animal rescuers as the "canine underground railroad." Linked by the Internet, cellphones and fervid love of animals, thousands of volunteers across the U.S., Canada and Europe go to enormous lengths to save strays like Paddy.

A good article, highlighting the efforts of Petfinder.com to place unwanted animals.

Technorati : , , , , , , , , ,