SAN FRANCISCO (CBS / AP) — Another dozen Chihuahuas from San Francisco headed to New York City on Tuesday aboard a Virgin America flight.

The animals, which were abandoned at the San Francisco Animal Control and Care shelter, took off on a morning flight from San Francisco International Airport.

San Francisco animal control officials said Chihuahuas are overpopulated in the Bay Area, so the dogs would not likely find homes here. They are, however, in demand in New York.

The animals traveled in the main cabin of a Virgin America jet.

KCBS’ Bob Melrose Reports:

More than a dozen Chihuahas were flown from San Francisco to New York City aboard Virgin America last year in the first “Operation Chihuahua” airlift.

Experts said pop culture is to blame for the overpopulation of the dogs in California, with fans imitating Chihuahua-toting celebrities like Paris Hilton.

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