GRANDVILLE, Mich. — Mike Carter's 29-year-old son Ben has been living in China for the past couple years.
"Due to the situation that's going on in China with the pandemic with the coronavirus -- he's scared," Mike said.
Almost all of the 9,000 confirmed cases of the virus are in China -- more than 200 people have now died.
"It's very emotional, we've been crying pretty much all morning long and pretty much this afternoon as well, you feel helpless because you can't go over there," Mike said.
Ben is scheduled to get on a flight out of China this weekend but right now the airline says he cannot bring his two dogs, Charlie and Snowball, with him. The family says Ben does not have anyone he can leave the dogs with.
"Now he's torn, he can stay there and risk his life or he can let the dogs go in the street or put them down and we know his choice is going to be to stay there," says Carter.
Mike said his family in the U.S. has tried reaching out to the United States Embassy in China and local leaders here in Michigan.
"Part of the problem with the Embassy is once again they're very overwhelmed as well," Mike said.
The family says animal shelters in China are at capacity.
"He has to make a choice and it's heartbreaking, we were all in tears on the phone today trying to figure out what to do and we're desperately trying to figure out a situation," Mike said.
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