ASPCA® and Wings of Rescue Transport More Than 170 Dogs and Cats from Texas Animal Shelters Impacted by Severe Winter Storms

Nearly 150 dogs and more than 25 cats in Texas take lifesaving flights to Delaware and New Jersey animal shelters to find loving homes
February 21, 2021

FORT WORTH, Texas—To assist Texas animal shelters impacted by the recent weather crisis, the ASPCA® (The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals®), and Wings of Rescue today led the urgent transport of more than 170 dogs and cats via ground and air to shelters in the Northeast where they will find safe, loving homes. Animal shelters across Texas have been severely affected by the unprecedented winter storms, many losing power and access to water, and these lifesaving transports are providing much needed relief to shelters and animals in their care.

The ASPCA moved pets from Athens Animal Rescue Shelter (Athens, Texas), Humane Society of Cedar Creek Lake (Kemp, Texas), and Humane Society of North Texas (Fort Worth, Texas) on three of the ASPCA’s Animal Relocation transport vehicles to two regional airports, where the animals were loaded onto Wings of Rescue flights, funded by the ASPCA. The animals were flown to Brandywine Valley SPCA (New Castle, Del.) and St. Hubert’s Animal Welfare Center (Madison, N.J.), where they will be cared for until they are adopted.

“The weather crisis in Texas has created dire circumstances for animals across the state, and we’re proud to work with our partners to relocate more than 170 homeless animals to safer areas, which also frees resources at animal shelters to help them continue to serve their communities,” said Matt Bershadker, President & CEO of the ASPCA. “This is a remarkable collaborative effort, demonstrating the deep commitment and compassion of the entire animal welfare community to meet the needs of these vulnerable animals.”

"The Humane Society of North Texas is extremely grateful to have a strong partnership with the ASPCA and Wings of Rescue in these lifesaving flights," said Cassie Davidson, Director of Communications, Humane Society of North Texas. "The original flight was cancelled last week for safety reasons as the severe winter storm approached Texas. Our dedicated staff cared for all of our pets during frigid weather conditions over the past week while our shelter was closed to the public. The flights today will free up nearly 100 kennels so we can reopen our shelter on Sunday to the public for intake and adoptions. We know these pets will be going to loving homes and we couldn't be happier for them."

“February brought us a double whammy. Right before the extreme weather set in, we were hit with 80 dogs and puppies from a hoarding case,” said Jennifer Miller, Director of the Athens Animal Rescue Shelter. “The ASPCA was right there with us, working on plans to move almost half of these dogs to shelters where they will be adopted quickly.”

“Severe winter weather greatly impacted Texas this past week as well as our shelter. We are so grateful to the ASPCA Relocation Team, and Wings of Rescue for coming to OUR ‘rescue,’ to relocate 37 of our dogs to find loving homes,” said Sharon Banaszak, Director, Humane Society of Cedar Creek Lake. “We are very proud to be a partner with the ASPCA in their lifesaving relocation program. ASPCA provided the support, and resources this week to assist when we needed help the most."

The ASPCA deploys nationwide to assist in relocation, search-and-rescue, sheltering and placement of animals during disaster situations including severe weather, wildfires, tornadoes and floods. In addition, we work closely with local agencies across the country to help enhance their animal response capabilities through grants and training opportunities.

The ASPCA is equally committed to saving lives and preventing animal homelessness through animal relocation. Since 2014, the ASPCA’s Animal Relocation Program has transported over 165,000 animals across the country on more than 7,100 ground and air trips in an effort to find them adoptable homes more quickly. For more information on the ASPCA’s efforts to help animals, please visit