Hurricane Sandy Pets Fly to Helen Woodward Animal Center

Help Hurricane Sandy Pets: Southwest Airlines and SeaWorld Rescue Team Show “Paw”-some Commitment to Homeless Animals!

BREAKING NEWS: This Saturday, November 17, 60 orphaned dogs and cats (thanks to transport partners, Save-A-Pet and Delaware County SPCA) are flying across the country, via a donated charter from Southwest Airlines, cared for by SeaWorld animal experts, and will have a safe and secure new home for the holidays at the Helen Woodward Animal Center. Follow their journey on our Facebook page, or Twitter feed.

Follow on Twitter with #sandypetsflight

The extraordinary rescue is being made possible by Southwest Airlines, whose Flight Crews are donating their time and whose fuel provider BP is donating fuel for the flight; along with the manpower of SeaWorld, providing veterinarians and technicians to assist and chaperone the pets across the country. SeaWorld’s experts in San Diego will also meet and transport the pets to their new home after they “touch paw” at Lindbergh Field at 3:30pm. The flight departs from Newark, New Jersey.

Staff and volunteers at Helen Woodward Animal Center stand ready to receive these pets, but they need your help, too.

“These are the silent victims,” said Helen Woodward Animal Center President Mike Arms. “There are shelters that have been devastated by Hurricane Sandy, without electricity, without supplies.  Despite this, the goodhearted rescue facilitators have taken in an overwhelming number of pets displaced by the hurricane and waiting to be returned to their owners.  Unfortunately, their own orphaned dogs and cats who inhabited the shelters before the storm are facing euthanasia because their simply isn’t room.  We received a call from these shelters asking for our help and we were so lucky to have incredible friends like Southwest and SeaWorld to help us.”

“We know the Northeast is still recovering from Sandy and there is a long road ahead, which is why we have devoted our aircraft and resources to bringing in volunteers to assist on the ground,” stated Linda Rutherford, Southwest Airlines Vice President of Communication and Strategic Outreach.  “Helping these animals find their forever homes and making room for the many animals displaced by the Hurricane is something we were happy to do, but wouldn’t have been possible without the generous spirit of our Employees and partners.”

“We have a long history of rescuing animals and giving them a second chance at life and helping this effort is a natural extension of our resources,” said SeaWorld spokesperson Becca Bides. “Helen Woodward Animal Center and Southwest Airlines are big-hearted organizations and long-standing partners of SeaWorld and we are thrilled to team together for a cause. Everyone involved in the rescue is going to incredible lengths to aid these displaced pets and to get them into loving homes.”



  • single metal or plastic cat bowls
  • cat collars
  • Scamp brand cat litter
  • poop scoopers for litter boxes
  • size medium and/or large litter boxes


  • large size metal dog bowls for food and/or water
  • small (fits 9-13” neck) and extra small (fits 6-10” neck) dog collars
  • sweaters for small and extra small dogs
  • small or medium-sized blankets (to fit into dog kennels and crates)
  • extra large dog kennels (48 x 33 x 30 in)
  • slip lead style dog leashes
  • gardening watering can with spout (we use them to pour water into the dog dishes without having to go into the kennels or crates)


  • paper towels
  • plastic gloves – all sizes
  • hand soap
  • hand sanitizer
  • empty spray bottles
  • sponges
  • bleach
  • long zip ties (used to secure kennels)
  • metal spoons (used to feed medications)
  • ziploc/plastic bags, sandwich and gallon size
  • brooms and dust pans
  • 30 gallon or larger size trash bags

For more information log on to, call 858-756-4117, or visit Helen Woodward Animal Center at 6461 El Apajo Road in Rancho Santa Fe.  Helen Woodward Animal Center is seeking donations to provide care for these hurricane orphans until each one has been adopted. Any remaining funds will go toward the care of other orphaned pets at Helen Woodward Animal Center. To help, please log on to

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