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Bingham County dogs head to new homes in Montana

August 23, 2012

Morning News – Leslie Mielke Dr. Peter Rork lifts a dog and her kennel into his private plane Thursday morning. Roark flew 11 dogs from the Bingham County Humane Society to adoptive homes in Hamilton, Mont.

Dr. Peter Rork landed in Blackfoot Thursday morning, picked up 11 rescue dogs and flew them to adoptive homes in Hamilton, Mont.
Rork is a retired Fellowship Trained Orthopaedic Surgeon from Jackson, Wyo., where he practiced for 23 years.
“The difference between people and dogs is people expect a certain outcome,” Rork said. “Dogs are just so appreciative.”
Dog is My CoPilot, Inc., is an animal rescue organization dedicated to saving animals’ lives by coordinating and encouraging air transport to abandoned and abused cats and dogs so that they may reach forever homes. The organization is being incorporated as a Wyoming public benefit corporation and is based in Jackson Hole.
Judy Zimet is the secretary and treasurer of the organization. She is an attorney in Scottsdale, Ariz., who works coaching law students. She has also worked extensively with non-profits.
“I was a pilot before I became a surgeon,” Rork said. “I worked my way through med school as a pilot because I decided working in medicine would be more fun.
“It was,” he said.
Dog is My CoPilot is the outgrowth of Rork’s generosity. He began donating approximately eight hours of his time each month and his single engine Cessna airplane to animal rescue organizations in 2010.
“I started with one flight a month,” he said. “Now we have two flights each week.”
He has been full time since May.
“We are trying to recruit pilots with their own aircraft,” Rork said. “We want to be able to reimburse all pilots for their fuel costs.
They fly animals in the western United States.
For example, there are a lot of big dogs in Idaho. California has lots of Chihuahuas.
Air transportation is arranged between Idaho and California. The big dogs are flown to California. The Chihuahuas are flown to Idaho or Wyoming.
“This is fun,” he said. “It’s also worthwhile.
“There are approximately eight million animals in shelters,” said Rork. “Half are rescued; the other half are euthanized.
Marcia Williams and Marguerite Hartman work with the Bingham County Humane Society and the Blackfoot Animal Shelter. They regularly transport rescue animals to other rescue shelters in Idaho, Utah and Montana.
Flying is faster.
More information about Dog is My CoPilot can be found on the website www.dogcopilot.org.
The Bingham County Humane Society and the Blackfoot Animal Shelter can be reached at (208) 680-3881.
 

 

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