ARAPAHOE COUNTY, Colo. — There were some happy hounds at Centennial Airport on Wednesday.
As anyone knows who lives here, Colorado is a dog-friendly state. Unfortunately, not every state can make that claim. Which is where “dog is my co-pilot” was created. It gives unwanted dogs a second chance to find a loving home here in Colorado.
Ninety-five dogs and puppies flown in from New Mexico to Centennial Airport thanks to Peter Rork and his nonprofit organization, and delivered to foster families volunteering their time with Forgotten to Forever Rescue.
“We fly them from the high-kill facilities and deliver them to organizations such as these fine people here in Colorado that will never put down a healthy animal,” Rork said.
This flight was from Roswell, N.M., where there’s an overpopulation of dogs because of a lack of spaying and neutering. When dogs are impounded there, they have 24 to 72 hours to make it out of the shelter or be put down.
Rork, a lifelong pilot and a former orthopedic surgeon, left his job after his wife died and decided to help rescue animals. Three to four days a week, he’ll fly crates of puppies and dogs to various states.
He said he’ll be flying rescue dogs to Centennial Airport every two weeks.
“We might not be able to save every dog, but the dogs we do save we have truly changed their lives,” transport coordinator Jen O’Connor said.