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A heartbreaking video posted to Facebook by a worker at the Los Angeles County Department of Animal Care and Control Center shows a German shepherd excitedly wagging her tail and barking for joy after spotting her owners on the other side of a fence.
The dog, so happy to see that her family had come to bring her back home, had jumped the fence and escaped into a neighbor’s yard before being picked up by Animal Control, according to the worker.
As it turns out, however, the dog’s joy would be short-lived. The family she was so excited to see was not there to reclaim her, but were instead adopting a new dog and leaving her behind.
According to the German shepherd’s family, the dog’s father had recently passed away, leaving her sad and heartbroken. The family explained that all she does is cry since losing her father. So instead of allowing her to grieve, showing her love and compassion, and helping her through her heartache, they decided to abandon her at the shelter and bring home a different dog instead.
Her new name, Zuzu, given to her by shelter staff, was inspired by Karolyn Grimes’ character in the movie “It’s a Wonderful Life.”
After learning Zuzu’s story, a rescue organization agreed to take Zuzu into their care. She’ll leave the county shelter on Friday where she’ll be loved and adored while the rescue carefully selects the perfect forever family that will give her the life she deserves.
Chris Kim, a public information officer for Los Angeles County’s animal control, told The Huffington Post Wednesday that it would be up to the rescue group to decide if Zuzu would be available for adoption. He declined to identify the organization.
Kim said he was unable to confirm whether Zuzu’s former family had successfully adopted another pet from the shelter during the filmed visit. He said the shelter wasn’t made aware of the alleged owners’ dark backstory until after the Facebook video was posted online.
Kim also implied that, had they known the family viewed dogs as “disposable,” it would have affected their ability to adopt another dog from the shelter.