A Chattanooga dog was tragically separated from her owner due to dire circumstances. She was found wandering the streets before being taken to a shelter. However, thanks to the power of social media, Lilo the dog was reunited with her owner.
On January 20, the dog was found unattended in a local neighborhood with her leash still on. She looked happy and healthy, but was frightened. A Good Samaritan reported her to McKamey Animal Center, where she was taken in.
A heartbreaking note was found with the dog, apparently written by Lilo's former owner. The note told of the owner's desperate situation and the reason why Lilo was no longer with her. The note read:
"My name is Lilo," the note said. "Please love me. My mom can't keep me and is homeless with two kids. She tried her best but she can’t get help. I cost too much for her. She really loves me and I’m a great dog and love to be loved on. Please don't abuse me."
On reading the note the staff at McKamey Animal Center were heartbroken. They thought that leaving the pet to fend for herself was unnecessary because they knew that there were so many options that could help the woman provide for her pet despite the difficult circumstances.
So to reunite Lilo and her owner and give them the support they needed, they took to social media.
"We are so sorry that you had to make the decision to leave her behind," the shelter wrote in the Facebook post. "We know many folks are struggling to care for their pets right now. We know how hard it must be to give up an animal you so clearly loved because you can’t provide the care she needs. We understand."
"But if you are reading this, we hope you will come forward to reclaim her," the post said. "We will help you with whatever you need to care for her, to the best of our ability."
Although Lilo's owner didn't see the Facebook post, one of her acquaintances told her about the message and she soon contacted McKamey Animal Center.
McKamey Animal Center staff were able to confirm that she was indeed Lilo's owner. On January 25 they shared a photo of Lilo and her owner reuniting.
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In the meantime, the rescue is working with local partner agencies and non-profit organizations to help the couple find a pet-friendly homeless shelter and help them overcome homelessness.
"Lilo will remain in our care until that happens," the shelter said.
At the end of the ordeal, they took to Facebook again to thank everyone who offered their support, writing:
"We are so grateful to each and every one of you who provided support and kindness. You've given us back our faith in humanity!"
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