Everyone likes a road trip. Especially the nearly 80 dogs whose lives Greg Mahle saves every time he embarks on one.
Twice a month for the past decade, Mahle has taken a five-day, 4,200-mile road trip, one that takes him from his home in Ohio, south to Houston, then north all the way to Connecticut and New York, before heading back to Ohio. The "Today" show notes that's more than 1 million miles, or 42 times around the world in total.
On the southernmost stretch of his journey, Mahle collects around 80 dogs facing imminent euthanasia, then delivers them to pre-arranged homes in the north.
"You see the worst of people and you see the worst situations in the beginning when you’re picking the dogs up ... By the time you get to New England, though, you have people crying for these dogs, these dogs who have never had anyone to cry for them,” Mahle told Ohio's Zanesville Times Recorder.
He added that the South has a larger stray dog problem than the North due to what he describes as a culture that doesn't believe in (or enforce) spaying and neutering animals.
Along the way, an army of volunteers meet Mahle's semi-trailer full of dogs, helping feed, walk, water and play with the animals. Mahle charges $185 per animal, which is just barely enough to cover his cost for fuel, maintenance, dog food and trailer cleaning after every trip.
Though he isn't getting rich off the endeavor, Mahle told the "Today" show it's fulfilling work. "I like the world I've created," he said in a recent segment. "I'm happy in it."
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