Updated: Friday, August 2 2013, 10:21 PM EDTCombine a love for animals and with a love for flying and you have a program called Pilots and Paws.Our "Person of the Week" is one of those pilots.Flying is his hobby but when it involves saving the life of a dog or cat, it become his mission.And it's easy to see why given his profession.On any given weekend, a hobby can turn into hope. "I love the exhilaration of being in an airplane."David Crouch pilots a plane to many places when he's not working and often for the same purpose. On this day, to a small airport in Georgia to pick up a puppy facing the prospect of death at a shelter. A yorkie named Bentley, saved by a man who's taking him to a terrier rescue group in Greensboro."He just didn't get adopted, and was scheduled to be euthanized.It's a common cause for the program known as Pilots and Paws."It's about saving the lives of the pet.Saving animals is more than hobby to doctor David Crouch, it's a healing art performed with the hands of a veterinarian surgeon.Dr. David Crouch, "Person of the Week", "I have the best job in the world and when I'm not putting dogs back together here at work. I'm able to fly them to safety."And he performs both tasks for non-profit animal rescues at no cost, The Animal Compassion Network, Asheville Humane Society, and Brother Wolf just to name a few."He has done some surgeries on dogs that may not have gotten help in the past," says Denise Bitz of Brother Wolf Animal Rescue. "and what he's done is save us money so that we can use that money to help other dogs in need and cats in need."It gives them the only chance they have."An adopter would be very reluctant to adopt a dog that had an injury and needed care."The just need a little help to get some of these surgeries done that they otherwise couldn't afford. Trying to get these dogs in a position where they're rehabbed, they're comfortable and then fostered."And in some cases, like Bentley the terrier, taking off to a better life."It comes full circle. It's wonderful" Pilots not only donate their time and plane, they pay for fuel and other costs.But the program is not a pet taxi service, like getting someone's personal pet to grandma for the summer. Click here for the program guidelines and other information. David Crouch
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