Dogs rescued after Hurricane Harvey living the high life in New York

Hurricane Harvey dogs rescued in the aftermath of the natural disaster come to Best Friends in New York City where they are adopted.
By Nicole Hamilton

Best Friends in New York works collaboratively with city shelters, local animal welfare organizations and individuals to save the lives of pets in shelters in New York City and the surrounding tri-state area. As part of this work, Best Friends has a national lifesaving concept space and pet adoption center in SoHo, hosts adoption and fundraising events, and runs a foster program in partnership with Animal Care Centers of NYC. Together, we will Save Them All.

There’s a dog named MacGregor who was recently adopted from the Best Friends Pet Adoption Center in New York City by a family who lives in a high rise building in Brooklyn. Today, he loves nothing more than living the high life in his new home, which features a panoramic view of the New York City skyline.

MacGregor is sitting on top of the world these days, and he’s not alone. He shares the same great fortune as 13 other dogs left homeless by Hurricane Harvey: All 14 of them were adopted after being brought to the adoption center from Houston, and they’re all living the good life in homes of their own.

New life for rescued Hurricane Harvey dogs

“Every adoption here at the center is special,” says MaryAna DeLosSantos, senior manager of operations for Best Friends’ Northeast region. “But the Harvey dogs were part of something much bigger.”

The dogs all survived hurricane Harvey and went through Best Friends’ emergency shelter in Houston after the storm. As many pets as possible were reunited with their families after the storm, but the families of many dogs and cats couldn’t be located, and no one came looking for them. They all needed a safe place to go after their lives were upended by the storm.

A woman in a jacket with MacGregor the dog, outside the Best Friends Pet Adoption Center in New York City

As transport efforts got underway for cats and dogs destined for shelters and rescue organizations across the county, the adoption center in New York made plans for 14 dogs to embark on a journey to the Big Apple. It would be a road trip of a lifetime of them, because in New York City their lives would flourish in homes with families excited to give them a brand-new start.

More about Best Friends’ no-kill initiatives

Hurricane Harvey dogs land in a good place

Cinnamon, a dog from Hurricane Harvey, gets adopted at the Best Friends Super Adoption in December

Cinnamon was one of the first Harvey dogs to get adopted. Katie Brenner had been looking for a dog to adopt when she heard that dogs from Houston would be at the Best Friends Super Adoption, held this past December.

It didn’t matter to Katie that she lived in Baltimore. She was excited to make the drive to the event venue at the Meadowlands Expo Center in Secaucus, New Jersey. And when she met Cinnamon and saw how sweet and kind he was, she adopted him, wrapped him in the coat she brought for him, and left in time to make it home before the city’s first big snowstorm of the season.

MaryAna says the other Harvey dogs shared Cinnamon’s relaxed disposition. “They were all very easygoing, dogs,” she says. “You could tell they were just very grateful. They knew they were in a good place.”

Hurricane Harvey dog Sophia on her road trip from Houston to New York City

Notes about Hurricane Harvey dogs from adopters

Today, the team at the center receives regular updates and photos from the people who adopted the Houston dogs. Recently, there was a note from Sophia’s family that included a photo of her, snug in her bed, cuddling her toys.

Sophia the dog is safe and snug in her bed at home

There also have been recent updates about Mickey, who helped his family heal from the loss of their beloved dog. Mickey now starts his day with a stroll in Madison Square Park and on the weekends, he lives upstate with his family in a house that has a big fenced-in yard to play in.

MacGregor the dog lying in bed with his person in New York City

Putting the hurricane in the rearview mirror

Cinnamon is at home in Baltimore. MacGregor and Mickey are taking in the big city with their families. And Sophia feels a little better in her own skin every day. These three, along with many other rescued pets, are finally putting the hurricane behind them.

“These dogs are so very special to us,” says MaryAna. “A lot of us here in New York were with them in Houston as well, and when we get updates from their new homes and see how happy they are, it’s so rewarding. It’s why we do what we do.”

Woman lying in bed looking at her cell phone with MacGregor the dog lying on her leg

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Photos courtesy of Bonita Alexander, Stacey Axelrod and the Best Friends Pet Adoption Center in New York City