American freeskier Gus Kenworthy fell in love in Sochi — with puppies — and the Olympian is planning to bring the female dog and her four puppies home to the U.S.
In Sochi, which has a lot of stray dogs, the Colorado dog lover joined the puppy pile and tweeted this photo, with the words “puppy love is real to puppies”:
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USA Today said it’s more challenging to bring an adult dog on international travel,
but the four puppies may be easier to get back to the United States.
Kenworthy tweeted that he’s made appointments for the four to have vaccinations and has found kennels for them.
Kenworthy stumbled on the puppies and their mother when a friend texted him a photo of the dogs, saying he was “going to freak out,” USA Today said. So the skier hopped on a gondola and then a bus to get to the security tent where the dog family had made a home nearby. Once he saw them, it was all over.
“They are like the cutest thing ever,” Kenworthy told USA Today.
He’s already found homes for most of the pups, although he plans to keep one for himself, the newspaper said.
In between feeding the pups and making the long trip just to visit them, Kenworthy won a silver medal in the slopestyle competition.
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“I’ve been a dog lover my whole life, and to find just the cutest family of strays ever, here at the Olympics, was just a fairytale way to have that go down,” Kenworthy told USA Today.
Stray dogs are a common issue in Russia, and animal activists have been smuggling some of the strays out of the Sochi area
. The movement to rescue the dogs came as there were reports that Russian government officials contracted to have the dogs rounded up and killed
as Olympic crowds were arriving.
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