More than 300 dogs and cats left behind in Afghanistan during the chaotic US withdrawal were safely evacuated this week — and now some of the resilient pets are up for adoption, according to a global animal rescue group.
No Dogs Left Behind, which has a shelter in Jersey City, flew 171 dogs and 146 cats out of war-torn Kabul after a months-long effort to secure a cargo plane landing in the now-Taliban-controlled locale, the organization said Friday.
The adorable furballs, once in the care of Kabul Small Animal Rescue, landed in Vancouver, Canada, after a three-day journey on the private aircraft, according to a press release from No Dogs Left Behind.
“Our work doesn’t end here,” said the group’s founder, Jeffrey Beri. “We will keep fighting the good fight on the front lines until every animal is safe from harm.”
In August, hundreds of dogs and cats were abandoned in Afghanistan as US troops and allies fled the country, despite efforts by advocates to fly the animals out.
Rescue groups couldn’t get permission at the time to land private charter planes at the Kabul Airport amid the frantic rush to leave, and weren’t allowed to transport the animals via military aircraft.
But Beri eventually got the green light from authorities, though the details of the agreement were not immediately clear. He and and Derick Stone, of Kabul Small Animal Rescue, spent the past two weeks completing paperwork and preparing the animals for the long journey.
After landing in Vancouver, 19 dogs were transported to a “safe house” in Toronto on Friday and will be put up for adoption after health checks and “time to decompress from their long journey,” the group said.
Anyone interested in adopting the pups or donating to the group can visit its website.
No Dogs Left Behind has saved thousands of dogs since it started in 2016. It has also targeted slaughterhouses, wet markets, traffickers, and illegal breeders across China.