About 40 refugees arrived in small planes at Craig Field on Saturday, furry and panting and wagging, quite happy to be on the ground.
They had no names, just numbers. The names will come later, in their new lives.
They were part of a massive volunteer operation by a group called Pilots N Paws, which on Saturday saw 80 or so pilots ferry more than 300 dogs out of an airport near Charlotte, N.C.
Their destinations: No-kill shelters in seven states, where the animals will have a chance to meet the humans who will eventually adopt them.
North Carolina has one of the highest pet euthanasia rates in the country, the group says, so this a life-or-death matter. But that doesn’t mean the people and animals involved weren’t having fun.