If you’re like most dog owners, you love your pet. Instead of seeing him as an animal, he’s become a huge part of your family. That means you take him places, play with him, give him lots of snuggles, and yes, spoil him rotten. But what would you do if you’d had a pet for nines years only for someone to steal it?
Chances are you’d go crazy. That’s pretty much what happened to a woman from Butte, Montana. On October 30, Cassandra Rasmussen had a so-called family friend staying in her home. Things didn’t turn out so well. This “friend” not only stole her purse but also took off with Zeus, her 9-year-old Pit Bull.
Cassandra was beside herself.
As any responsible pet owner would do, she spent days searching for Zeus. Unbelievably, she found out the person who took him had been arrested in November on the suspicion of theft. But the arrest didn’t take place in Montana but in Charleston, West Virginia. But what really sent her into a tailspin was that her beloved dog was taken to an animal shelter.
She had no idea what would happen to her pet.
As you probably know, a lot of animal shelters don’t keep dogs long. If they can’t find the rightful owner within a few days, the animals are euthanized. Fortunately for Cassandra, two things worked in her favor. First, Zeus was taken to the Kanawha-Charleston Human Association. Second, because she’d had him microchipped, the staff was able to find out he belonged to her.
Now came the challenge of getting Zeus home nearly 2,000 miles away.
As a single mom with two daughters, Cassandra wasn’t in much of a position to get him back home. As she stated, “I really want to go get him and bring him here but I just can’t afford to do that and I can’t just take the time off work and my kids.”
That’s when a group of transport volunteers stepped up to help.
Many Paws Volunteer Transport is one of several top-rated organizations. Made of up volunteers, each person offers to drive an animal one to two hours, passing it off through a line of other people until reaching the final destination. Posting on Facebook that they needed help with Zeus, it didn’t take long to fill the run sheet.
People did more than drive.
For volunteers who either couldn’t help with this transport or live in another part of the country, they still offered to pay for meals and hotel rooms for the drivers. So, the journey began on a Tuesday. After an overnight stay in St. Louis at a volunteer’s home, the plan was to have Zeus home within a week.
The process was a success.
Taking turns driving, Zeus made it back home where he belonged. “The kindness of everybody is just amazing,” Cassandra said. Upon his arrival, he was greeted by his family, as well as several television stations throughout Montana, all eager to capture the reunion.
Chelsea Staley, the executive director of the Kanawha-Charleston Human Association explained that this is a perfect example of the work they perform all year long. This organization, along with others like Kindred Hearts Transport Connection, Above and Beyond Transport, and Pilots N Paws are always looking for different types of volunteers. If you love to help animals, this is an excellent opportunity.
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