Nimitz viaduct homeless give up dozens of pets ahead of state sweep

Nimitz viaduct homeless give up dozens of pets ahead of state sweep
Published: Oct. 19, 2017 at 10:22 PM HST|Updated: Oct. 20, 2017 at 6:58 AM HST
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HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - Animal advocates are moving out more than 90 dogs from an entrenched homeless camp under the airport viaduct that's set to swept next week.

The advocates say they know that the attachment many squatters have to their pets is a major reason they stay homeless. So their goal is to help the pets find new homes first.

"These people, they really do love their animals and you can tell that, and a lot of them refused to go into treatment or to leave because they want to make sure their animals would be safe. So by removing them, we're actually helping the people here getting to where they need to be as well," said animal lover Sasha Kamahele.

It's estimated that at least 180 people live under the Nimitz viaduct.

On Thursday, a team of volunteers and animal welfare organizations came to rescue them and find them new homes.

Roselyn Mariano said at one point she had more than 60 dogs. She regretfully gave them all up.

"Very hurt. Feels like I'm losing my kids," Mariano said.

Mariano said she knew she couldn't care for her pets or give them the medical treatment they deserved.

"I wish we had a home, a home for them, for us, together…but it's impossible. That's why we need to separate," she said.

Two-year-old Gannon was also there to foster his first pet.

"He loves dogs. My father-in-law has a Rottweiler and they're the best of friends. So he's really excited to get his own dog, Gannon's mom, Whitney Cabrera said.

Gannon chose Mariano's dog named "Alexis."

The Hawaiian Humane Society it did outreach at the encampment for three days and 33 dogs were willingly surrendered.

Enforcement is set to begin on Monday.

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