COWLEY COUNTY, Kan. (KWCH-DT/WKRC) - After nearly two years apart, a dog previously assumed dead is home with her owner.
The unforgettable, improbable reunion happened Thursday at a humane society in Kansas.
The pet and owner are together again, and Maile Trist is keeping her chihuahua Jazzy close.
“She's holding onto me right now,” Trist said. “She's literally gripping my arm.”
They were reunited Thursday at the Cowley County Humane Society after two years apart.
“I was crying and I was shaking because I was just so overjoyed that for one, she was still alive and for two, I could bring her finally home,” Trist said.
At 16, Triste met Jazzy at a California Humane Society and it was love at first sight.
“She is the sweetest baby,” Trist said.
But when moving to Salina in 2020, Triste says she gave Jazzy to a friend to look after her dog while she got settled.
“They blocked me,” Trist said. “I couldn't contact them and finally, when I did find contact, they told me that she died.”
The call that Jazzy was found alive three hours away from Salina in a rock quarry was a very welcome surprise after mourning her for a year and a half.
“Regretting giving her to those people and feeling so guilty about it,” Triste said. “I'm so glad I finally got her back.”
Trist says what she experienced with Jazzy shows the importance of why pet owners need to have their pets microchipped, so that no matter where they might be found, they can make their way back home.
“Every single animal has a different name, different microchip number and it makes sure that you and only you get your pet back and that's the biggest thing to me,” Trist said.
Jazzy is still getting settled and acquainted with her new furry siblings.
“She curled up in between my legs last night and I was like, ‘Oh my gosh, it's amazing to have my little cuddle buddy back.’”
Jazzy is not short of any love.