These People Rescue Over 1,000 Dogs A Year … in Their Free Time!


This is Rose. Just a few weeks ago, she looked like this. She was found starving on the streets of Sumter,
GA, with her puppies, Tulip and Violet. Now, she’s got a beautiful family up in
Maine. She’s gonna have a happy little warm home. We’ve spent the last 2 years doing epic
road trips around the world. But we’ve never done it with a van full
of puppies! No! She’s licking her poop!! This is the story of how we, the Nowhere Men,
had the opportunity to take Rose, her puppies, and two other great dogs on a marathon road
trip to their new homes up north – and how the dedicated work of some amazing
volunteers is saving the lives of over 1,000 homeless pets a year. How do you save over 1,000 dogs a year? You gotta drive ‘em from Georgia to Maine! We LOVE animals. While we were traveling through Central and
South America, stray dogs were everywhere, and it totally broke our hearts. It’s not like that back in New York. But it turns out, in the Southern US, low
spay and neuter rates mean homeless animals are everywhere, and animal shelters don’t
have nearly enough resources to rescue them all. I just don’t have the funds. And I don’t have the space. Almost 8 million homeless animals are brought
into shelters each year, and only 2/3 will make it out. Unadoptable animals are often euthanized by
necessity. That’s part of my job, is having to make
those decisions – that’s the bad part of my job, the hard part of my job. But we heard that since Hurricane Katrina,
when hundreds of thousands of animals were left homeless, several rescue organizations
have set up transport networks to get homeless pets up north, where they find their forever
homes within days. This is Brickel from Adopt-A-Golden Atlanta. This is Goose and he’s from Puerto Rico. This is Tommy. This is Jazzy, and this is Gus! We called up Road Trip Home, a rescue organization
run by volunteers in their free time. These guys rescue over a THOUSAND homeless
pets a year, by driving them up north to get adopted. So we rented a big empty minivan, and took
another road trip south, to see if we could help out on a transport mission. We are right now in a gigantic and beautiful
minivan. Formerly known as the Soccer-Mom Mobile, we
are turning it into the Puppy Mobile. From the Empire State to the Peach State,
here we go. Yea, you like that? So it turns out chalupas are delicious… Our first stop was Sumter, Georgia, where
many homeless animals begin their journeys home. The people that work here, they work here
for the animals. They’re not working here to be rich – because
they’re never going to be. Animal control brings in over 1,200 homeless
pets a year to the shelter – that’s almost 4 strays a DAY! I’ve got two great animal control officers,
that love animals – he’s got pitbulls at home, so he’s got a soft side. He’s feral, but he’s just as sweet as
can be. The main reason for all these strays is lower
spay and neutering rates. It’s just not as universal as it is up north. Animal control is here with an intake – with
a dog that’s just been picked up. This is real deal – this is real-time, puppy
coming in off the streets with animal control. He seems nice! Yea, he’s a very friendly dog. How’d you get him in the cage? With some food. So he’s hungry. He’s hungry, yea. I love what I’m doing. No Name here just got picked up, and the first
thing they do is get them checked out. You find out all sorts of things – his weight,
his general health status, whether he has a chip, which means he’s been registered
by an owner before, his teeth, to find out how old he is – he’s got some fleas on him,
too! Road Trip Home will be picking up a truckload
of animals today for transport to Maine. It’s a 20-hour drive they do 3 times per
month. They have taken up to 30-35 at a time, so
if it wasn’t for them, I don’t know what we’d do. My euthanasia numbers would be double. We decided to start Road Trip Home, we decided
to make it happen. It just snowballed into this huge thing that
none of us could believe. This was 2011 we started, it’s now 2017
and we’re 7,000 animals saved. Rose! We’re gonna do the marathon drive alongside
Road Trip Home’s transport van. Rose, and her two puppies, are coming with
us in our minivan! You’re coming with us, Rose! They were just on the street, fending for
themselves. Around here? Yep – in the city, following mom, in the middle
of winter. Babies were nice and fat, mom was skin and
bones. Everything she had was going to these little
kids. We couldn’t keep them with her, they had
to go to a foster home. I’ve spent the last 24 hours in the car
with Alex and Eric, and Tulip here smells way better than them! These puppies haven’t seen their mom since
coming off the streets weeks ago, and they’re gonna see a healthy mom, and their mom’s
gonna two healthy puppies. Here she comes! Thanks to Sumter Humane Society, and Annie,
their foster mom, these dogs have been nursed back to health, and they’re ready to go
north, so they have a real chance at adoption. Are you guys ready for an adventure? I even think Brian’s wagging his tail! Are you my momma? Seeing those little babies get loaded up,
and they’re looking at me like, “Momma, what did you just do to me? Where am I going?” – it makes me sad, but
yet I think, you’re gonna have the best life. We’ll get in a terrified dog that has never
been touched, and we’ll walk it on a leash and put it in the van. That means a lot to me, that we can get a
dog that far, that you can even put it on a leash and walk it out the door. My personality is I focus on the ones I didn’t
save. But 800! 800 we saved last year! Dogs are coming in from Sumter, they’re
coming in from Chattanooga, from the shelters all around the state, they’re coming in
from foster families that have been taking care of these dogs for the last couple weeks,
getting them ready for the transport. Like this litter of 9 Meesos! We have… They’re all going on the van, and in our
minivan, up north. In the meantime that means today, last minute
checkups with the vet, and prep, and all sorts of stuff going on, it’s a busy day! There’s a lot to do. It’s very busy, it looks very chaotic a
lot of times, and then the rest of the time it might look like nothing’s going on but
there’s a lot going on behind the scenes. Everybody kinda looks out for each other,
it’s teamwork to get it done. Susie’s in here. She’s chillin’ out. There are about 40 dogs being loaded up into
the Road Trip Home van, and another 5 will come with us in our minivan. You’ve got Rose and the puppies, and then
we’ll make a decision about whether we’ll try to put 2 more on, 1 more on. We’ve gotten everything we own into a tiny
little corner of this car, we’ve got 3 or 4 crates bungied in the back. Whatever is not in our bags we can assume
is gonna get covered in piss and poop. Doggie palace! I’d pay about $2,000 a month for this. This medium-sized crate with running water
is a NYC apartment. We’ve got Sugar and Star coming with us
and they are the Tweaker Sisters. Star is over there having a panic attack which
she’s been having for about 48 hours now. Are you ready to go? You ready to go Rose? You’re coming with us. They’re definitely gonna poop in their crates,
you’re definitely gonna be smelling it multiple times along the way, and then another one
will poop, and then you’ll change the towel, and another one will poop. You’ve got paper towels, you’ve got gloves,
I’ve got trash bags for you, some slip leads, Febreeze – you put em into your air vents
and they’re really gonna help you a lot. We know you guys get hungry so we got you
some good snacks, we got some bananas. Alright! What do you think? You think we’re ready to go? I think you’re ready! Well this is it! Okay, bye!! Oh, I don’t have to touch it. Bye!! We are about 1 minute into the drive, the
vet is right there, and Star has already taken a dump, and it stinks incredibly bad already. Oh, now she’s sitting on it, oh God. So what do we do, do we move it now? We’re one minute into the trip! No! She’s licking her poop! Oh God, this is a disaster! Stop!! Eric, you gotta pull over, she’s gonna lick
all the poop! I’m trying, I’m trying! I could’ve gone there I guess… Aah! There’s poop I gotta stop! Eric, there’s all these places! Agh, poop monster! Look at it, there’s poop all over it! Ugh! What the hell have we gotten ourselves into??!! I can’t believe this – we’re 3 minutes
into the trip, we can still see the shelter, and this is already a total mess. Dude, there’s poop all over your shirt. Made you look! Oh God, you got me so bad, I was so scared. All aboard! Ok, we’ve got everybody here, and we’ve
begun the marathon journey to Maine. Tulip, where we going? Tulip says in 1.2 miles, we’re gonna turn
right. This is nuts – we’ve got 3 humans, we’ve
got 5 dogs, 2 of them just have not shut up since we pulled out of the parking lot. She was quiet for like, 10 seconds, and that
was when she pooped. And now she’s barking again. Even their breathing is annoying! Just shut up, don’t breathe! They’re so cute though… It’s about to be sunset here, and we’re
gonna arrive in Maine around noon or 1 PM, so we have a long overnight drive ahead of
us. All these dogs came from Sumter Humane Society. They were rescued from the streets, and they’re
gonna go home to amazing new families that are gonna adopt them and take care of them
and love them – but until then, WE’VE got them, we’re gonna love them and take care
of them. And it’s gonna be pretty hilarious as they
continue to poop right in Alex’s face. Oh, what is that? Did someone just poop again? More poop, more poop. Oh, so much poop! Wet poop, wet poop. Oh, there’s poop on her hand. No, no, stop licking your hand! It’s like a bad movie! Oh it smells so bad! If we stop every time there’s a bad smell,
we’re never gonna make it to Maine. So we’re just dealing with it now, it stinks
in this car, which is a rental. Can’t stop for much, but we do need gas. You just vomited all over the car, you feeling
okay Rose? I was distracted and Violet got to the iPhone
charger and made haste with it, so I guess this is our situation now. Just what every driver wants, to start their
shift at 2 AM. We’ve got a diarrhea emergency, somebody
call the diarrhea police. Oh wait, we are the diarrhea police! I cleaned up the diarrhea, and then I stepped
in it. This is a poop parade. This is just an explosive machine of poop,
on wheels, going down your country’s highways. And everything is just covered in poop or
Febreeze. It’s gonna be real tough to fall asleep
with my nose literally a foot away from a pile of diarrhea, and the cutest little guilty
puppies just staring at it, and at me. We were really falling for these dogs. Despite the poop, we were part of their story
now. Hey Sugar, what do you think of the North? You’re a northern girl now! You gonna learn how to ski? You gonna eat maple syrup and lobster and
stuff? You gonna go to some Phish shows? You gonna eat some Ben & Jerry’s? We’re like 20 minutes away. We’re gonna make this happen. We got a special delivery of puppies coming
in hot from Georgia to Maine, we are 5 minutes away from touchdown! We’re gonna deliver these puppies! This is kinda sad, we’ve grown pretty attached
to these nuggets, and we’re gonna leave them forever. This is how my mom and dad must’ve felt
when they dropped us off at college. We are fulfilling our Nowhere Men promise
of you get your puppies in 20 hours or less or they come free, so here we go baby! We’re doing it! Yay!! It’s been a long drive, we’re finally
meeting up with Chet and Dan, let’s see how things are going in their van. Hey guys! How’s it going? You guys are official now! We are road warriors! Hello! This is the cutest cargo load ever, but also
the stinkiest, and the loudest! After a marathon 20-hour drive, Dan gets to
play Santa Claus at our first stop in Maine. This is the moment that they arrive at their
interim home, and things are moving quickly. Somebody gets peed on every time? Yep, somebody gets peed on every time. Okay, I guess turning it over to you makes
it official. It’s time to turn over custody of Rose,
Tulip and Violet to our first drop-off stop, Animal Welfare Society in Kennebunk, Maine. They’ll be checked again by a vet, spayed,
and put up for adoption. Jen here is certain they’ll be adopted within
days. Yay! You guys did it! Come on Rose! This is Rose! That was fun Rose, wasn’t it? The moment has come. Welcome to Maine! Don’t leave! These guys did such a great job. Okay let’s go inside. No, I don’t wanna say bye to them. Watch this. Bye baby. Hey, be good, okay? Pound it. Bye baby. They’re so happy to be running around! You guys made it! Star and Sugar will be delivered to our second
and final stop, Animal Refuge League in Portland, Maine. This place is massive and state of the art. Here are Star and Sugar, they’re happy to
meet you! Hi guys! It’s doggie adoption heaven. This is the quietest Star has been the entire
ride. That looks good on you, Star! Sugar, looking good! Star was the star of our backseat. She was yapping the whole way, and since touching
down here she has not made a peep, she is just rolling around. She’s strutting, for a tiny dog she’s
got this real proud strut. Goodbye, goodbye! Look how happy you are. All dogs will be quarantined here, and then
head out to foster families or be adopted to their forever homes. For a dog, the average length of stay from
arrival to adoption is 9 days, and for cats it’s just under 2 weeks. For puppies, adoptions are even faster, usually
in 1-2 days! We call it a bed and breakfast, and they are
so well loved, we have 250 volunteers that come in weekly. This is our brand new 25,000 sq. ft. shelter. At this state of the art shelter, all animals
are spayed and neutered before they go up for adoption. We spay and neuter all of our animals that
come to us, but we also offer low-cost spay or neuter for those that qualify based on
their income. Sugar and Star’s foster mom is here to bring
them home. We took them from the start, and now we’re
about to see the finish. We brought them from Georgia. That’s amazing, that’s very cool! You’ve got two little bundles of joy coming
your way. I’m new to dogs, this is only my third time
fostering and I think I’m gonna adopt a dog. Fostering has helped me get to the point where
I do want my own dog. Oh good! They were great passengers! Come meet your foster! We celebrate every adoption. It’s a really awesome feeling seeing these
animals leave. Rose is about to go home? Rose is gonna go to her foster home, which
hopefully if everything goes well they’ll keep her. I know it’s gonna go well. There’s Rose! There she is! Awww! I am so happy! I am so happy! And I’m so grateful to you guys, and to
Ruth, and to AWS, I am SO happy! Wow, what a lucky dog you are Rose! You are very, very popular right now. She’s gonna meet her sister Shelley, and
she’s got a big fenced-in yard to play in, and a beautiful 2-mile sandy beach. Yea, she’s gonna get her feet wet. She’s gonna leave some footprints on that
beach. She’s gonna have a happy little warm home. Rose, you hit the jackpot! She is gonna get a lot of love! I’m trying not to cry, cuz I was told no
tears today! So on Monday, she’ll come in and get spayed
if you want to drop her off around 8:30-9 o’clock. Don’t feed her any breakfast. She’ll get her spayed and get her microchip
and be good to go. This is the last stop, Rose. I promise you. So, she’s home! And I got myself a great friend. Happy girl, happy girl! Mouthy girl! I need your signature right there. Gladly. You have your appointment all scheduled for
Monday. Thank you, again. Enjoy, Rose! Bye Rose! We took her from –
oh, you do it! We’ve been talking about forever homes since
step one, down in Sumter, and we just saw that. We got to see it, so – I mean, I think that’s
a wrap. Yea, that’s a wrap. It’s a win-win. To have a Road Trip Home come in and bring
them up to Maine, where we know they are gonna leave here pretty quickly with a home, is
pretty cool. So that’s how you save over 1,000 animals
a year. What a crazy week it’s been. Cue the reflective montage. We started in New York, down to Georgia, up
to Maine, and back to New York in under a week. We came for the dogs – what was amazing was
truly meeting the people. There are so many different people who are
so invested in making sure these animals are happy and well cared for. And the people doing it, seem to really, really
love doing it, even when it hurts the most sometimes. Working here is a 7 day a week job. Christmas. We’re here everyday. We’re ALL in it for the dogs. This isn’t a drama scene, it’s everybody’s
heart based on getting that dog. It’s pretty funny, it rejuvenates you a
lot. Makes up for all the lack of sleep. We dedicate our lives to this. We’re all participating to the max to help
these animals find a home. If I get reincarnated when I pass away, I
wanna be a Road Trip Home dog. She says that all the time. I say it all the time!

5 thoughts on “These People Rescue Over 1,000 Dogs A Year … in Their Free Time!

  1. To see your Love of Animals is Amazing & I am one of the adoptees of a very cute pup named Gulliver, do you remember him? His name is now Chesterfield, & he is Home Sweet Home, Thank You for bringing us Happiness!

  2. We are proud to be apart of Road Trip Home by fostering about 12-14 dogs over the past few years in Georgia as they wait for their transport.

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