Who do you call when you have a hyperthyroid cat who needs to get to San Mateo for treatment, or a cat with agenisis eyelids (no eyelids) with an ophthalmology appointment in Berkeley, or guinea pigs who need a ride from Santa Rosa to Marin Humane … and all of these transports need to happen within three days?

Animal Transporters! That’s who you call! Our team of transporters has been in action since early 2015. They’ve handled several hundred requests to “pick up,” “drop off,” or “stay with” cats, dogs, chickens, hamsters, guinea pigs, turtles and tortoises, goats, and birds.

It all starts when one of our departments asks me to find a transport for a particular animal to a specific location. The reason an animal might need to go offsite varies; it could be for a dental, a medical appointment, or for a special procedure. I’ll send an e-mail to all of the animal transport volunteers and if someone can handle the request we confirm the details for the transport!

Sometimes we need to get an animal from Marin Humane to a rescue organization specializing in a specific breed.

Once we had a request to transport a dog to a rescue all the way to Blackfoot, Idaho. My email went out asking if anyone wanted to see Blackfoot, Idaho. To my surprise, someone responded writing, “I would!” Funny part is, Tracey, our transporter, left Marin Humane in the dark, got to Idaho late at night and left before dawn the next day. I believe she STILL hasn’t seen Idaho! But she got the dog safely to his rescue.

Last year, we had several roosters who needed to get down to the Peninsula to a Sanctuary. Rainey, our transporter, got as far as San Rafael and was stopped on Highway 101 as there was a major accident that shut down all southbound lanes for about three hours. That’s right – stopped with several roosters serenading her for three hours. (And, yes, she is still an active transporter!)

Marin Humane partners with local veterinary hospitals, local and not-so-local specialty services, and organizations to get the specific care our animals need. It’s the animal transporters who make sure the shelter animals get there and back safely. They play an integral part in an animal’s journey toward finding their forever home. How cool is that?