At first, nothing seemed unusual about the stray Maltese dog that was handed in to Turlock Police Animal Services. But after scanning her microchip, the officers realized just how wrong they had been. Surely, this couldn’t be the same dog? But all the evidence proved it, and now they had an important call to make.
May 15, 2017, was a wonderful day for many, but it was especially so for little Trixie. Trixie is a 13-year-old Maltese dog who was found early that afternoon in Turlock, California. She was discovered by an unnamed good Samaritan in an unlikely place.
Trixie was spotted in the car park of a Walmart store with no owner in sight. The kind-hearted citizen correctly guessed she had been left there all alone and needed a safe place to stay. Consequently, they handed the dog in to the authorities.
The citizen left Trixie in the capable hands of the Turlock Police Animal Services. And while she was there, the dog was medically assessed and she found to be in good health. Luckily, it also turned out that Trixie had been microchipped, and so her information could be tracked.
Unfortunately, however, there was one major complication: the Maltese’s microchip was faulty. But although the officers couldn’t get all the information they needed from the damaged implant, they did find something to identify Trixie. She was registered to a veterinarian who might be able to shed some light on the stray’s past.
The Turlock Police Department later described the unfolding events on its official website on May 19, 2017. “Animal Services Officer Katie Butler did some detective work,” it wrote, “and found the veterinarian on record for Trixie.” However, it emerged that the little dog was far from home.
Both the microchip and the veterinarian’s location revealed something surprising: Trixie actually came from Kentucky. How she got to Turlock was a mystery, but it was something the officers were interested to find out. And to that end, they were very keen indeed to talk to Trixie’s owners.
The veterinarian was able to put the officers in contact with the dog’s humans. But what Animal Services discovered when they spoke to Trixie’s mommy and daddy was astonishing. As it turned out, they couldn’t have been the ones who had abandoned the Maltese for one very good reason.
In fact, they had reported 13-year-old Trixie as missing three years previously. In January 2015 Tammy Crews and her family had been devastated by the loss of their little dog. Trixie disappeared one day without any explanation, and the Crews family hadn’t seen their pet since.
Unsurprisingly, the family were distraught by their loss and launched a campaign to try and get their pet back. Not only did they scour the neighborhood for the missing dog, they also posted flyers in case anyone else has seen her. Unfortunately, neither approach proved successful.
In an act of desperation, they even offered a reward for Trixie’s return, but the search was futile. However, the family had been careful to microchip the dog when she was younger, and so there was still a chance she could be found. All the Crews family could do was wait and see.
No doubt their hope was tested when the years passed and there was still no sign of Trixie. And then, after three years, the Crews received the call from the Turlock Police Animal Services. Their baby had finally been found, alive and well.
The Crews family were baffled by how their pet could have ended up in California, which was more than 2,000 miles across the country. Indeed, the family had never even visited the state themselves. Consequently, the only conclusion they could come to was that Trixie had been snatched from their yard.
Trixie’s humans were ecstatic that they were finally going to see their baby again. There was just the matter of getting the dog all the way to Kentucky. Luckily, Turlock Animal Services Officer Glena Jackson was more than happy to help with that.
Trixie’s family paid for the dog’s plane ticket and Officer Jackson accompanied her all the way to Kentucky. Tammy Crews told ABC News on May 22, 2017, that she was deeply touched by the kind gesture. Trixie’s safety had been playing on her mind.
“I’ve woken up almost every night since they’ve called about her. [I was] worrying about getting her home,” Tammy said. “For Officer Jackson on that end to go out of her way and do something that only benefits my family is just such a blessing.”
When Officer Jackson met Tammy Crews at the airport with Trixie, the reunion was a tearful one. Tammy was overjoyed to see her baby again after so long. And as for Trixie, she wasted no time running into her mommy’s arms.
And with Tammy’s consent, the heart-warming reunion video was shared with Officer Jackson’s fellow officers at Turlock. The official Turlock Police Department website featured a quote from Officer Jackson regarding the event. “We know that four-legged family members are just as important as the two-legged family members,” she said.
Turlock’s mayor, Gary Soiseth, even announced he was naming Trixie as their very first Pet of the Year. As for Tammy, she’s elated to have Trixie home with her once again. “She’s supposed to be here,” Tammy told ABC News. “She’s supposed to be part of our family.”
“We don’t know what happened to her for two and a half years,” Thad Crews told ABC News. “We don’t know… exactly what kind of adventures, good or bad, that she had. But we’re so glad that she’s home safe and that we get to take care of her for the rest of her life.”