SAN FRANCISCO INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT --Twelve airline passengers made it through customs as part of an international adoption of a different kind on Tuesday afternoon.
They came from the streets of Taiwan. Twelve strays, from puppies to seniors, who united with their new families at San Francisco International Airport after a 20 hour flight from the island nation."He seems good," Sacramento resident Jonathan Longacre said. "I was told he's pretty shy because he came from a pretty bad background so we're gonna give him lots of love and lots of hugs." Most of the dogs were Golden Retrievers, a popular dog that's being over bred in a densely populated country where people live in tight quarters, "In Taiwan what they do is they'll take these dogs because they're so cute and their temperaments are so good," said airlift organizer Melody Chen, founder of Love and Second Chances. "But once they grow to be full size they just set them free." Muttville Senior Dog Rescue founder Sherri Franklin says the demand for retrievers in California is high, "One of our adopters is a senior couple and Muttville waives fees for seniors so that'll be a free adoption for them. But our adoption fee is $200." The dogs arrived well groomed. Not bad, considering what they used to look like before they made it here, "They come in with hip x-rays, blood work," said Jill Morgan, area coordinator for NorCal Golden Retriever Rescue. "They do the best they can in Taiwan. We've had them come in with cataract surgeries that are already completed." All the dogs that arrived already had new homes. Dog lovers in Taiwan pay up to $1,000 per animal to prepare them for dog lovers in the U.S.