45 animals brought to Capital Region from Fla. after Irma

COLONIE, N.Y. (NEWS10) – Dozens of animals from Florida landed at Albany airport’s Million Air aboard a private plane Friday afternoon.

The Mohawk Hudson Humane Society was on hand as 15 cats and 30 dogs came down the conveyer belt into the hands of volunteers.

The animals came from Palm Beach County Animal Care in Florida.

“Imagine surviving a storm and then being plucked from your home, taken to a stranger’s house, being cared for there for a while, then getting on an airplane and vans to a destination unknown,” MHHS CEO Todd Cramer said. “They’re stressed. They’re scared. They’re tired.”

The animals were already homeless at shelters in Florida before Hurricane Irma hit, and now they’re making room for other animals rescued in the aftermath.

“It’s very dark in the back in the cargo compartments, so when we are flying, they all fall asleep and then while landing – when they feel the pressurization change – that’s when they wake up,” Sierra Pacific Airlines Cpt. Douglas Arnold said.

Some of the animals will be transferred to four other local organizations. For Sierra Pacific Airlines First Officer Jennifer Perez, it was an opportunity to provide the furry friends a new life.

“You know, you’re getting anywhere from a dozen to 100 animals from a kill shelter or a hurricane area somewhere safe where they’re going to have families in a few days to a couple weeks, and they’re all going to have brand new lives,” she said. “It’s awesome.”

Most of the animals will be up for adoption next week.

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