U.S. men's hockey team helps out pair of Sochi strays

Yahoo Sports

SOCHI, Russia – Unfortunately for the U.S. men's hockey team, it will not be taking home any hardware from these Winter Olympics but the Americans will have two more passengers on the charter flight home on Sunday night.

Team USA forward David Backes, his wife, Kelly, and Megan Elizabeth, Jeff Carter's girlfriend, are leading a group of NHLPA members attempting to rescue two stray dogs from Sochi. Yahoo Sports was given exclusive access on Sunday morning at the family hotel in Adler as the U.S. was loading up its luggage and the strays dogs before heading to the airport that evening.

Kelly Backes, wife of U.S. forward David Backes, is helping rescue two Sochi strays. (Yahoo Sports)

“It's been such a journey, but one that's certainly worth all the work, as the lives of these two pups will be changed for the better," Kelly Backes said. “We hope this brings much-needed awareness to animal rescue and adoption and shows the public how gentle and kind the companion street dogs of Sochi really are.”

According to Backes, both "Sochi Junior" and "Sochi Jake" will be housed, confined and quarantined for 30 days after arriving in America at Five Acres Animal Shelter in St. Charles, Mo. After the confinement period is completed (as noted by CDC.gov) and the dogs are fully vaccinated and cleared by a vet, they will be available for adoption.

Added Backes: “In the meantime, for the people whose interest has been piqued for these two, we encourage them to visit their local shelters and rescues to help volunteer or possibly adopt a homeless animal in their area.”

To learn more about Five Acres Animal Shelter, click here; to learn more about Athletes For Animals, click here, or click here to adopt a pet across North America.

Related Winter Olympics coverage on Yahoo Sports:

Click the image to see who else is rescuing a Sochi stray (or five) like Olympian Gus Kenworthy. (Twitter)

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