CHESAPEAKE, Va. -- The Southeastern Virginia Golden Retriever Rescue, Education, and Training (SEVA GRREAT), a local dog rescue group, prides itself on rescuing golden retrievers from other countries, but when the coronavirus hit, it hit its operations.
Mimi Wormeley and Susan Burton, two fosters, were two of SEVA GRREAT’s applicants and have waited since December. The pandemic delayed their waits, but they were united with their golden retrievers back in August.
"She is all around just an amazing golden retriever,” Wormeley said about her dog.
As for Burton, she said her dog is “going through his puppy-hood right now. All he wants to do is play and wrestle and chase the ball."
The two fosters already had dogs and said they each looked to adopt another.
"Back in March, I was so excited; I had the house all ready,” Wormeley said. “Then the flight got canceled, and I was little upset."
"We had a lot of patience,” Burton said. “We weren't in a hurry, but we wanted him to have a companion."
SEVA GRREAT was able to rescue eight dogs, and it is the first group this year they were able to rescue, according to Jane Krom, the adoption coordinator with SEVA GRREAT. This group came from Turkey.
“Being at the airport again to see them arrive and have the volunteers so excited to meet them,” Krom explained, “and bring them back to their foster homes and their adoptive homes, it's been fantastic."
Around this time in 2019, Krom said SEVA GRREAT had 40. It was another result of the pandemic.
Their last group came in December, and rescue flights were canceled soon after.
"Thankfully, the volunteers over there remain,” Krom said, referring to the volunteers in the other countries. “They are continuing to work as hard as they can."
She also says their waiting list was already long, but as the pandemic progressed, there was an increase in adoption requests.
The owners are thankful, and SEVA GRREAT said it will continue their mission.
"As soon as we can get more flights arranged, we'll do it,” Krom said.