Almost a week after a group of Swiss tourists rescued a donkey from the Giza district and flew it to Switzerland for 800 Euros, an American woman reportedly airlifted 14 dogs and a cat out of Egypt on Sunday, according to airport officials.
The woman paid 60,000 Egyptian pounds ($3,400) for the operation to rescue the 15 animals, and shipped them to New York via national carrier EgyptAir.
A photo circulated by airport staff showed dog cages stacked at the departure terminal in the airport.
The officials did not identify the woman, but said she works at animal welfare associations, the Associated Press reported.
Stray dogs and cats are widespread in Egypt’s streets, mostly surviving on trash piles. These animals also frequently subject to abuse, particularly dogs, who have reportedly been targets of a poisoning campaign.
Animal shelters worldwide are grappling with funding problems, and in a Egypt, a country plagued by economic turbulence, rescuing animals is an especially daunting task.
Egypt’s Red Sea governor announced last month that youth living in the Red Sea governorate can earn a financial reward of EGP 100 for every five stray dogs they capture from the governorate’s streets.
Captured stray dogs should be delivered to the government’s veterinary authority for neutering, according to state-owned Al-Ahram.