PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — It was a special day at Animals Friends as the dogs rescued from a home in Ross Township had a heartwarming reunion.
Animal Friends said it was their largest rescue yet as 117 dogs were removed from the home in September.
The stench of ammonia was so strong, officers had to wear protective suits with oxygen tanks to enter the home.
The dogs captured the hearts of rescue workers and those in the community.
Adoption applications were taken by the hundreds, and the Ross dogs and owners were back for a special reunion on Friday.
“He was actually one of the dogs they showed on the news,” said Bill Wiles. “So we kind of knew what we were looking for.”
Wiles and his wife came from Evans City to be first to adopt one of the Australian Shepard mixed breed dogs.
Nugget now has toys and space of his own to run at his new forever home.
The staff at Animal Friends said the dogs’ sweet temperament despite their adverse conditions inspired today’s rescue reunion.
While the reunion festivities were happening, so were other rescues.
The Greene and Lawrence County Humane Societies brought 10 dogs and an Erie group brought five bunnies.
It’s called the New Years Rescue, a time at the end of the year when smaller shelters are faced with heartbreaking decisions.
“To euthanize just to open up kennel space for the new year,” said Cody Hoellerman, the director of communications at Animal Friends. “So at the time, Animal Friends stepped in and said what can we do to help?”
More than 200 animals have been rescued by Animal Friends in the last few months, the highest number in agency history.