Rosie, the dog, is has had quite the trip to Colorado. Jennifer Skiff, Director of International Programs, Animal Wellness Action explains; "Rosie's journey has been having her family leave her in Afghanistan. Waiting for 8 months in kennels to get on a charity flight that took her to Vancouver and then getting to the border and being denied (entry into the United States) again this weekend."
Born as a street dog in Kabul she was taken in by the Baquet family. They are American citizens who were living in Afghanistan and running a mining consulting business. Jessie Baquet, the oldest of two daughters, said when they brought her home from the shelter Rosie was a big hit right away.
"We brought her home and she was just like running around," she says.
In 2021 after nearly a decade of happiness, a series of cataclysmic events ripped Rosie away from the Baquets..
They had traveled to Colorado Springs in June of 2021 for a visit when James, the father of the family, suffered a stroke and couldn't return home. The family stayed in Colorado Springs to care for him.
Soon after, the United States pulled out of Afghanistan and the Taliban took over. Rosie was trapped all alone in their family home with only neighbors to check up on her.
Soon even that would be too risky because the Taliban was taking over the neighborhood and getting curious why neighbors were visiting a seemingly empty home. Neighbors told the Baquets they couldn't watch Rosie much longer.
"Eventually people were like, 'yeah no we can't,'" said Jessie Baquet.
The Baquets thought they had lost their dog forever until they connected with a local charity in Afghanistan. Getting her back to the United States wasn't going to be easy.
The CDC had recently banned entry to dogs from countries where rabies is common. Afghanistan is one of those countries. That meant they had to fly Rosie to Canada first, then apply for an exemption from the CDC. A process that took 6 months.
"We filed all the correct documents starting in February and we kept getting denials even though they were the correct documents," said Jennifer Skiff.
Finally, Friday, after a long journey, Rosie was granted permission to enter the United States and landed in Seattle. She and her driver Owen are road tripping to Colorado. They are expected to arrive on Tuesday.
Jessie Baquet says having Rosie in Colorado will make their new place feel more like home.
"I just think it's like adding the last piece of the puzzle," said Jessie.
Rosie is one of 285 animals that were brought to Canada on this rescue mission from Afghanistan that involved a coalition of rescue and animal welfare groups. There are still more dogs waiting for permission from the CDC to be reunited with their families.
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