GREENVILLE, Ala. (CBSMiami/AP) — A Florida pilot dedicated to saving the lives of animals has reached quite a milestone.

Jeff Bennett of Big Pine Key flies animals from high-kill shelters to rescues, foster homes and no-kill shelters around the South and he has now made his 1,000th save.

Bennett volunteers for Pilots N Paws, a non-profit charity that works with pilots who help transport animals.

Last Friday, Bennett flew from Florida to Greenville, Ala., where he picked up 23 dogs and packed them in his small plane. A fuzzy, mixed-breed puppy was his 1,000th animal, and Bennett and other rescuers celebrated by putting a party hat on the dog and taking photos.

Bennett flew the dogs to Lakeland and Naples in Florida, where they will be adopted or housed in foster homes.

Alabama rescue volunteers say the dogs would have been euthanized if Bennett hadn’t taken them to Florida.

(TM and © Copyright 2012 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2012 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)



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