Breeanna Brown, the placement coordinator for Young-Williams Animal Center, has a trip to New England planned for the weekend, but she won’t be traveling alone.
Along for the ride are 24 dogs and 16 puppies which will be dropped off at shelters in Connecticut and Massachusetts.
Although Young-Williams is overcrowded, Brown said many shelters in the Northeast need dogs.
“In our Northeast states, they are a few years ahead of us on spay and neuter programs,” Brown said. “They don’t have unwanted litters, so they are low on (adoptable dogs).”
The dogs who had been at the shelter the longest were chosen to participate in the journey.
No cats were allowed on the trip because there’s not a safe way to transport cats long distances without making them excessively stressed or sick, she said.
Brown hopes the trip is a reminder of the importance of animal adoption and the necessity of spaying and neutering pets. She said the simple surgery can lead to healthier pets who live longer lives.
The dogs were all loaded into crates and put in the “rover,” the large transport vehicle for the spay and neuter program at Young-Williams. They each got a toy for the ride, and Brown said they would get regular bathroom, food and water breaks.
Monica Brown, the shelter director for Young-Williams, will accompany Breeanna Brown on the journey.
“We’re confident they’re all happy, healthy animals,” Monica Brown said. “Once the wheels start running, they’ll all lay down and go to sleep like kids.”
If the experience goes well, Northeast Animal Shelter in Salem, Mass., has agreed to take 40 to 50 animals a month from Young-Williams.
The trip will be equally beneficial for Young-Williams because it will free up lots of space to take in new dogs from around the Knoxville area.
Rileigh Austerman has been volunteering at Young-Williams since June and said she’s gotten to know the dogs over the past months.
“I just hope they all get there safely and get adopted,” Austerman said while walking the dogs before they were crated. “All of them have been here for a while, and this is their second chance.”
The Knoxville branch of Erie Insurance sponsored the trip and is paying for all fuel costs associated with getting the dogs to New England.
~Courtesy of http://m.knoxnews.com