The 10-year-old Yorkie mix finds a new life after being surrendered by her owner’s caretaker earlier this year.
Small blonde dog with two colored eyes and green collar portrait
Credit: Courtesy of Lindsey Tatgenhorst

Grab your Kleenex because this 10-year-old Yorkie-mix has an exceptionally moving story. Jazzy, who was surrendered to an Atlanta shelter in early February after her previous owner passed away from COVID-19, found a new home. Lindsey Tatgenhorst and Matt McVay gave this "fuzzy-eyed" dog a second chance, adopting her on March 14. 
"When we met her, we both just loved her spunky spirit mixed with her chill attitude. Also, when we picked her up, she licked us on the nose, and it was pretty much a done deal," Tatgenhorst tells Daily Paws.
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After making the decision to adopt, Tatgenhorst and McVay quickly turned to iWag, a metro-Atlanta non-profit dog care facility. They were familiar with the organization because of the location in their neighborhood. "We really love what iWag is all about," Tatgenhorst says. "They are committed to not only placing rescue dogs in forever homes but also focused on medical needs, socialization, and training for these animals."

Jazzy with parents
Credit: Courtesy of Lindsey Tatgenhorst

Contrary to Tatgenhorst and McVay's outlook on adoption, some adopters hesitate to rescue older shelter animals. But rescuing a senior pup has many benefits! Those sugar snoots are just as wonderful and loving as young ones (and may have more training and socialization experience). Plus, they tend to be overlooked at the shelter—the ASPCA says these animals are "typically the last to be adopted and the first to be euthanized." 
In Jazzy's case, her prospective parents were familiar with the rewarding feeling of adopting a senior dog. McVay has past experience adding an older dog to the family, and understands the importance of giving pups like Jazzy a second chance at life.

"With Jazzy, there was an automatic connection," he says. And despite being blind in one eye, the little scruff nugget is in great health. "From what we know, it seems like her sight has worsened over time and is not uncommon with her breed," McVay says. "Every once in a while, we'll notice that her depth perception is off but otherwise she doesn't seem inconvenienced by her lack of sight," Tatgenhorst adds.

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As for Jazzy's past, her previous owner sadly passed away from COVID-19 earlier this year. Jazzy was surrendered to iWag by her owner's caretaker in early February. "We do not know a ton about her previous life," says Tatgenhorst. "The shelter said they nicknamed her the 'office dog' based on her loving and sweet personality." 

Jazzy laying in front of fire roaring in the fireplace
Credit: Courtesy of Lindsey Tatgenhorst

Many shelters across the country have seen a rise in pandemic-related issues. Recent data from the ASPCA estimates that 4.2 million pets will enter poverty as a result of the COVID-19 crisis—a 21 percent increase from pre-pandemic estimates. 
Whether it's due to job loss or hospitalization, the ASPCA launched a financial aid response program to help pets and pet parents in need. The initiative includes $2 million in grants to animal welfare organizations in critical need of funds, and pet food to pet parents who face challenges providing food for their animals. This relief will surely help some of Jazzy's four-legged friends in need.

As for the sweet, senior Yorkie mix, life is looking up. "During the week, Jazzy is in either of our offices being the laziest coworker... napping on her back ensuring there is easy access to her belly for rubs," Tatgenhorst says. Jazzy's new parents say her most likable quality, paws down, is at the start of each day. "As soon as our alarms go off in the morning, she immediately jumps on the bed to shower us with face kisses and snuggles."

We're so happy this sweet girl found a home full of kisses and snuggles to share!