A Manitoba pilot is putting the time he’s building toward his commercial licence to good use by helping care for dogs on the region’s far-flung First Nations communities. Mateo Yepes was to have made a delivery of 180 kg of dog food to the Bloodvein First Nation, about 200 km. north of Winnipeg on Friday. The isolated community is one of many that has a big population of dogs that don’t get proper care and Yepes told the CBC that Tracy McWhirter, the manager of the restaurant where he works is the president of Earthdog Terrier Rescue, a group that provides help for the animals. When he told her about his flying activities, the wheels started to turn.
“When I heard there were these communities that had these poor animals that, according to Tracy, they’re in such bad health and they’re so skinny and they need people to just lend a hand to keep these poor dogs going,” he told the network. “I asked her if she ever needed an airplane to go up there, just to bring stuff a little bit quicker.” Yepes and the group are splitting the cost of the aircraft rental which will help him achieve his flying goals faster. “It’s a new destination for me, so it keeps me on my feet to try a new place to land, a new grass strip and also check out new parts of Manitoba that I haven’t been to before as well,” he told the CBC. “So it’s also going to be fun for me to do as well. And you also get to help out dogs at the same time, so it’s a win-win for sure.”