What areas do you serve?
In an effort to maximize our limited resources we generally offer service to areas east of the Mississippi. Because of the costs associated with transportation we have a cost-per-dog we try to maintain. As such, a typical mission requires a certain number of dogs to be transported per hour of flight. Missions are reviewed on a case-by-case basis and exceptions are made for circumstances such as veterans and natural disasters. See the map for our general practices.
How many dogs can you transport on a flight?
Each mission is unique, and the size of the pups plays a determining factor. Our record so far is 42 pups. We have several size crates and placing various combinations is a bit like playing Tetris. Below you’ll find a list of configurations we know will fit, along with the corresponding dimensions of each size crate. We ask that the sending rescue determine the size crates appropriate for the transport using our configurations.
(photos of crates lined up and maybe a configuration pic & chart)
Must the pups be crated?
It’s our practice to crate the pups. There have been, and will be exceptions to this, but for the safety of the pups and humans, crating is our general policy.
What kind of plane do you use for the missions?
‘Lassie’, as she affectionately known, is a Piper Saratoga purchased by our founder with FlyPups in mind. It has large cargo doors for easy loading and unloading, is exceptionally sound proofed & ventilated, and has a sufficient speed and range for most missions.
There are times when other volunteers ‘come to the rescue’ with their planes and these are often determined by availability and suitability of the requested mission.
How often do we transport?
One week we completed four missions. But generally speaking we’d like to be flying three or four each month with more as resources enable.
Do Dogs Travel Well by air?
In our experience, yes. According to our veterinarian the dogs anatomy is different from humans in that they don’t suffer from the same ear pressure build ups. That said, they are subject to slight nausea from turbulence, so for the sake of the pups and the pilots we are most often able to find smooth air. Generally, the pups are a bit chirpy during taxi and take-off, but upon reaching altitude the hum of the engine has lulled them to sleep. They usually awake again upon our descent and are bright eyed ready to judge the landing.
Can I adopt a FlyPups dog?
Do you fly cats or other animals?
Our primary pilot has an allergy to cats, and has determined landings to be challenging with his eyes swollen shut. On one occasion we were able to find a substitute plane & pilot, but this is not our focus.
Once, enroute to pick up some dogs we did deliver a bird from a rescue situation. We will evaluate each request on a case-by-case basis.
What are your requirements & guidelines for transport?
Each mission is unique, still we have some standard practices that help us to maintain a certain level of care and efficiency. To that end we require each dog to have a current health certificate, as it is mandatory for interstate travel. We require that the sending and/or receiving rescue be a registered 501c3. Additionally, it’s not our practice to pair sending & receiving rescues, we ask that this be arranged prior to making a request for transportation.
Communication is key. Once the mission is accepted we ask that a text & email chain of all pertinent parties be initiated. This allows everyone to be kept in the loop and cuts down on confusion. Understand that while every effort is made to adhere to schedules, things like weather can cause delays and postponements of missions.
It’s extremely important that the dogs treat transport day like a surgery day and abstain from both food & water after midnight. While they may be slightly hungry or parched, that pales to compare to the discomfort of throwing-up, defecating, and urinating, then having to spend the rest of the flight in this mess. Once we land all of the dogs needs will be looked after. The pups, pilots, and receiving shelter will all be grateful for this consideration.
We ask that you be considerate and understanding of any other requests the pilot requires.
What do you charge to fly a mission?
As a 501c3 nonprofit it’s our mission to provide these services at no charge to other rescue organizations. That said, our mission is funded by donations, and all are appreciated.
Can I pay you to transport my dog?
No. We are not a transport service but a nonprofit whose mission is to work with other 501c3 rescues helping to save the lives of dogs. Transporting pets for hire is against both our charter and FAA regulations.
Why fly the dogs? Isn’t driving easier and less expensive?
The majority of the dogs we fly, although healthy, are fragile coming from desperate situations. A ground transport that would take days to complete we can accomplish in just hours in the air. This translates into less stress, allows the dogs an easier time when reaching their fosters leading to a quicker adoption. Additionally, due to the practices we have in place and the utilization of volunteers, our flights are often less expensive than the longer and more arduous ground transports.
How can I volunteer?
Spreading the word of FlyPups, engaging in our various social media platforms, and encouraging others to do so helps us to help more pups. Of course raising much needed funds is another important element to our success. Little things like creating a fundraiser for FlyPups on Facebook to honor your birthday, or making FlyPups your designated charity on Amazon Smile all add up and empower us to save more pups.
If you live in or near northern NJ, we have plenty of opportunities to help depending on your desires, schedule, and skill sets. Please contact our volunteer coordinator for a current list of opportunities.
What are your needs? How can I donate?
FlyPups is most grateful to deliver food and supplies to the areas we bring dogs from. The folks advocating and caring for the dogs at this stage are often taxed and these donations allow them to better prepare and save more dogs. Additionally, it makes us happy to fly down with more than empty crates. So food, supplies, and crates are among the items we can use.
That said, monetary donations are most crucial as they enable these missions to be flown. Without your support we’re grounded. Join the FlyPups team with a contribution of any amount.