Happy Tails in Uncertain Times

We are all trying to find some joy while we stay safe at home during the pandemic. For many, including a number of Port of Portland employees, joy has come in the form of a new four-legged friend. We certainly aren’t alone.

Juli Zagrans is executive director of Portland-based rescue organization One Tail at a Time. As she shared in a recent CBS News profile, her organization has noticed a significant increase in interest this summer. “The last few months have been really busy with both foster homes and adoption interest,” Zagrans said.

Maureen Minister, the Port’s environmental conservation manager who sits on the associate board for One Tail at a Time, echoed Zagrans’ comments. “Getting dogs out of crowded shelters and into homes is incredibly rewarding. Since the start of the pandemic, more people than ever have been applying to foster and adopt dogs,” Minister said.

Recently, to help meet demand, One Tail at a Time welcomed a new set of dogs at the Port-owned Troutdale Airport. They were flown in by Peter Rork, a private pilot who after retiring from medicine co-founded Dog Is My CoPilot, which flies dogs away from overcrowded shelters and into cities like Portland that have plenty of willing adopters.

“Through our partnership with Dog is My CoPilot, we have been able to bring so many amazing dogs to Portland where they will live the good life and never see the inside of a shelter again,” Minister added.

All animal lovers should check out this heartwarming story on Dog is My CoPilot. We’re especially proud of Tumble, who is truly the star of the video. After spending time with the foster family featured in this news clip, Tumble was recently adopted by Steve Nagy, director of operations at the Portland International Airport.

Tumble’s name has since been changed to Winifred (Wini for short!), and Steve reports that she is already settling in well at her new forever home.

“She takes in the world through her eyes, as opposed to her nose…she watches and observes everything!” Steve shared. She’s also certainly got some terrier in her because Wini wants to chase every squirrel.

While still a puppy, Wini plays well with her new dog friend Elsie and shares toys and food really well. And perhaps most important, “She sleeps from 10 p.m. to 6 a.m. without a peep.”

Certainly, the happy tail we all need right now.