Dog Re-united With Family, After Loss of Daughter

One look at any dog shelter can bring about different emotions.



And in the case of Maricella Garcia of Selma, closure.

"I said, 'I gotta go get him,'" she said.

The "him" in this case is a Chihuahua, named Mardy.

But for months, he had been known as Cook.

He was one of the first dogs to stay at Second Chance Animal Shelter in Selma.

"Cook is getting a second chance, just like the name of our shelter," says Scott Robertson, who volunteers at the shelter.

Mardy had been with Garcia's family for the last five years, since he was a puppy.

But tragedy hit the family in November.

Garcia's daughter, Jessica, was losing her battle with cancer.

"We were at the hospital for five days, she was passing away," says Garcia.

At some point during that week, Mardy ran away.

"[There was] nothing we could do. That whole week, couldn't look for him, next week were funeral plans. It was hard," she says.

The family searched shelter after shelter, but no one had spotted Mardy.

That was, until Rose Robertson went to Garcia to get her nails done, and talk turned to the missing dog.

"I said, 'I have a picture of him I took,'" says Garcia.

"I said OMG," says Rose Robertson. "We had named him Cook. We've had him since November!"

"Cook was slated to be euthanized," adds Scott Robertson. "He's an older dog. He's been here a long time."

Garcia said she couldn't deal with two deaths in a span of months.

So, she gathered the money, grabbed her grandchild, and showed up at the shelter Saturday.

As soon as Mardy saw her, his tail began to wag, and he jumped up and down.

"They're a member of your family. They're a part of you. They're like your babies. One of our kids," Garcia says.

"What's really beautiful is we're giving a bit of Mari's daughter back to her with cook," says Scott Robertson.

Garcia says she could feel her daughter's presence through Mardyall the way down to the teal ribbon that was tied to his collar.

It's the same color used to raise awareness for ovarian cancer, which claimed her daughter's life.

"There are no words to explain, we're happy to have him back," said Garcia.

The Second Chance Animal Shelter has only been open for a couple of weeks, but those who run it could use your help.

It needs volunteers, dog food and toys, towels, antibacterial wipes and money.

You can find more information here.{}