Most of us have heard the heartwarming story of Maggie, the Labrador retriever who guarded the body of a yellow Lab hit and killed by a car in La Puente, Calif., last Wednesday, April 11. The sweet black pup, who was running around the streets without a collar or identification, sat in the middle of a busy street protecting the body of the other dog. A Good Samaritan saw what was going on, and he got out of his car, put traffic cones near the dogs and videotaped the happenings. That video has since gone viral.
The loyal and unharmed 2-year-old dog was taken to Los Angeles County Department of Animal Care and Control shelter in Baldwin Park, where she was spayed.
Scores of people around the nation fell in love with Maggie, who shelter employees named "Grace," as in "Amazing Grace." Many, many potential applicants—including the Good Samaritan—offered to adopt the dog if her owners could not be found.
But Monday, Maggie's owners showed up to the shelter and claimed their lost family pet. According to Capt. Aaron Reyes, deputy director of the department., officers were getting the dogs out of the street at the same time Maggie's family was at the shelter looking for her. Other so-called "owners" tried to claim Maggie as theirs, but the real owners were the only ones Maggie recognized, and they were the only ones who had proof that they did own this dog.
Many have questioned why the family allowed the dog to run loose without any identification or microchip, and without being spayed. Animal Care and Control will fine the family, who was not named, for having an unregistered dog and allowing it to run loose, and will have to pay nominal room and board costs, according to ABCnews.com. But the shelter did the surgery and implanted the microchip for free. Maggie was set to go home today after the shelter did a check of the family's residence.
No one has come forth to claim the deceased dog, and it is not known how or when Maggie and this pup came together.
Do you think this family should be allowed to take Maggie home? Or should she have been allowed to be adopted by someone else? Do you think she'll be cared for properly now, or will she go back to a life of potential neglect? Is it a heartwarming tale of a family reunited after an unfortunate incident, or a tough break for a mostly forgotten dog? What's your take on this?
To keep your own dogs safe, make sure they are licenced, microchipped and in an enclosed yard. Put identification tags on your dog's collar. Teach your dog to not bolt out open front doors or gates. And above all else, sterilize your dog. That way, if your pet does go on a self-appointed field trip one day, he or she won't come back home a parent.