Gus Kenworthy And Sochi Strays Finally ReunitedA. Boyea
Earlier this winter, nearly 100,000 animal lovers petitioned the International Olympic Committee to ban the cruel treatment of animal inhabitants in Olympic host cities, such as the barbaric tactics witnessed in Sochi. (Missed it the first time? The petition is still open and accepting signatures here.) Meanwhile, U.S. freestyle skier and Olympian Gus Kenworthy took action, rescuing a lucky litter of stray pups from a hard life on the Russian streets. After struggling with the bureaucratic red tape, Gus and the travel-weary puppies were finally reunited. Here is an adorable picture of two of the puppies, Mishka and Jake, getting ready for their television debut!
— Robin Macdonald (@robindmacdonald) March 13, 2014
The trip, however, also saw its share of heartbreak. Due to the difficult time Kenworthy, his friend Robin Macdonald, and the Human Society International had dealing with the government, one of the dogs didn’t make it. The Humane Society International was fighting with the government to get the puppy proper treatment and care and it took too long, resulting in the passing of the puppy. According to Macdonald’s twitter feed, “The Russian and Austrian Governments have played too many games here and have not treated these dogs properly, now sadly one may pass away.”
After that heartbreaking loss, Kenworthy and Macdonald say they are happy to have been able to save the dogs that they could. They hope that more people will do their part to help other animals in need, both overseas and in the United States, and that Russia will create shelters and implement measures to properly care for stray dogs. Thanks to the generous souls of Gus Kenworthy, Robin Macdonald, and Humane Society International, these dogs now have a chance at a better life.
Hear about their difficult journey in the video.