Hero Dogs are Flown Home in First Class

The dogs were rewarded for their outstanding work.

A search and rescue dog.

(aleksandr4300 / Shutterstock.com)

Not all search and rescue personnel are human, some are canine and man’s best friends work long hours to find survivors where people can’t. So when a massive 7.8 earthquake hit Turkey and Syria on February 6, 2023, rescue dogs were part of the international teams sent to help.

These rescue dogs came from countries around the world, including the US, UK, Mexico, Germany, and as far away as China, helped to search and recover survivors who were trapped in the rubble, reported Business Insider.

The earthquake and the many aftershocks that continued for days afterwards  were particularly severe and casualties were in the tens of thousands. Some people were rescued by the canine heroes’ days after the quake. But for these rescue dogs, it was all in a day’s work.

Flying home in style
When the work was finished in early March, it was time for these brave canines to return home. Turkish Air, the national airline, flew the rescue dogs and their handers home on special flights. But a spokesperson from the carrier told The Independent that the airline didn’t want to put the dogs in the cargo hold, so the rescuers were put in the cabin and upgraded as well.

The spokesperson said:“It was the least we could to do show our appreciation for these heroic dogs' sincere and heroic efforts.”

Providing aid for earthquake victims
Turkish air has also been providing flights for evacuees as well as sponsoring cargo transportation for medical supplies, food, clothing, shelters, and generators to help people who no longer have homes, according to The Independent.

The company also supported the 238,000 human rescue personal with over 1,300 aid flights. But this is just part of the global response to provide aid for the earthquake’s survivors, according to NPR. Earthquake relief aid came from at least 105 countries and 16 international organizations.

Since so many buildings and so much infrastructure was destroyed, aid will be needed for the long haul. It is especially difficult because so many people who were affected by the quakes were displaced from Syria. People can contribute through the UN Crisis Relief or from other nonprofits that are helping with the efforts.

While not everyone can go to help at an earthquake site, the brave people and canines who devote their lives to helping others should be applauded for their efforts. And an upgrade to first class is certainly a way to show appreciation.

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