Miracles do, indeed, happen. Just in time for the holidays, a Chihuahua who was reunited with her owner went viral because of the time it took for her to find her way back home: five years, specifically.
The Chihuahua, whose name is Sweet Pea, was discovered by the Humane Society on Tuesday afternoon in Covina–almost 30 miles away from her owner.
Sweet Pea went missing in Compton, California in 2015 and her owner, Ursula Lopez had long giver up hope of ever finding her. But a few days ago, Lopez received a call from the Inland Valley Humane Society that they had found Sweet Pea wandering around in Covina–almost 30 miles away.
The long-awaited reunion was captured on video by a local news station.
In the video, an animal handler brings out Sweet Pea as Lopez waits patiently on a nearby bench. Lopez appears to be emotional as Sweet Pea is brought closer to her. After the handler places Sweet Pea in Lopez’s arms, the reunion is complete.
When asked what it means to her to have Sweet Pea back, Lopez said: “It means the world to me.”
Sweet Pea was a little worse for the wear, looking a bit grey around her face, her nails long and haggard. But soon, the pup was packed into Lopez’s car, looking cozy and comfortable on a doggie bed.
Lopez’s parting words about Sweet Pea were truly heartwarming: “She’s ready to go home.” We bet she is.
The Inland Valley Humane Society was able to located Ursula Lopez because Sweet Pea had been microchipped.
Microchipping is a procedure in which a small radio-frequency transponder that is the size of a grain of rice is injected under the loose skin of your pet’s shoulder blades. Rescuers can locate a pet’s owner if the unique ID associated with the chip is registered in a national pet-recovery database.
Every year, roughly 10 million pets become lost from their owner. But if a pet is microchipped, they are approximately 50% more likely to be reunited with their owner.
We’re glad that Lopez has her doggie to snuggle up with during the holidays. We hope she holds on to her tight.
OK, so you’re a sorry person you might be wondering what the heck a “bodega cat” is, right? Well, a bodega cat is a special and hard-working kind of kitty who often lives in a ship or has taken a stroll away from home to find comfort in strangers…. and by comfort we mean food, comida, la papa. If you want a longer def, then you can find one here (and of course, remember gatitos are the kings and queens of the Internet). These kitties are often found near delis, lonjas mercantiles or anywhere that sells food. As we said, sometimes bodega cats actually live in the shop and will do anything within their means to get some abracitos y mimos from the customers! They often become legendary dwellers of their hoods.
They will employ their best gatito de Shrek antics to get a slice of pastrami or a little bit of queso, or perhaps a little cuddle, and like any good cat, they will just ignore you once their feline cravings have been satisfied. Just so you are prepared next time you encounter one of these, this is what we mean by gatito de Shrek (yes, we know he is the Puss in Boots, but us Latinos call him differently):
Credit: Puss in Boots / Dreamworks
And without further ado, these are some of the most tiernos y descarados bodega cats on the web:
This New Yorker who has made the streets his paradise
Credit: Twitter. @literElly
Just look at the masterful way that this bodega cat seductively twists and turns around Elly Belle’s ankle. Hard to say no!
Mayor Tom, a sus ordenes
Credit: Instagram. @fernandothebodegacat
Tom is laying the law of the land straight away: if you want anything you will need to pay him some attention, and some respect. He will be by your ankle, tus tobillos, of course! Are we the only ones who think cats were put on this planet to be the stars of the Internet?
Want a B&J ice cream? Well, too bad, I am just cooling here!
Credit: Instagram. @fernandothebodegacat
Good luck to whoever wants to grab an helado in this shop. That bodega cat is not going anywhere. Do we blame him?
Just woke up from my long siesta
Credit: Instagram. @mrmatthoffman
Just look at that rico bostezo. This cat found the perfect nap spot behind the Premium crackers. Just be careful next time you visit the shop: you don’t want to unleash hell by waking him up!
This cat found an ally!
Credit: Instagram. @rob_banks
Very cute. These two seem to have hit it up. This animal defender will surely visit this bodega cat often, and perhaps bring some fishy treats with him. This kitty struck gold: a co-dependent lifelong friendship with a human.
Do not disturb, por el amor de Dios
Credit: Instagram. @catswhoroam
That bag of Book Chicka Pops seems to be the best pillow ever. This cat is just so comfy we even feel like peeping toms looking at this picture!
The guardian of the chelas
Credit: Instagram. @photon41
This minino knows that when new boxes of cerveza arrive, it is of the uttermost importance to guard them. Just look at the serious and committed expression on its face. Well done, chaparrito.
This is one aristocratic cat
Credit: Instagram. @bauerwines
Everything in the dweller of this bottle shop screams class: from the long whiskers to the furry chest to the aristocratic way in which he yawns. Perhaps some sherry, my lord?
Cats of anarchy!
Credit: Instagram. @devilsreject13
According to common lore, if you cross a black cat you will face bad luck. But this one is just so cute on that motorbike. Or, is he part of a biker gang? Shall we call Ron Perlman and ask if he is part of Sons of Anarchy?
Ready to jump! Watch out!
Credit: Instagram. @klararob
This cat by the name of Max seems to be ready to jump on the first customer that walks in. We wonder what is going through his animal mind? Sardines, perhaps.
No, kid, no chocolate today!
Credit: Instagram. @izzy_sabbath
We love, and are terrified by, the judgmental look on this fluffy face. No chocolate for you today, escuincle. Or perhaps he is shaming an adult cliente for having a Kinder huevito every day.
Cat not for sale
Credit: Instagram. @laurasplan
Cats and boxes are like chicken and rice, peas and carrots… we just want to clarify that this cat was not being sold! He just loves to spread sus patitas open wide in this box.
Guardia de lujo
Credit: Instagram. @heyitsarongold
No, he is not a criminal. This cat is there as a customer service liaison for the shop and is ready to assist you if you have any questions in regards to the operation of the Automatic Teller Machine. Ha.
This gatito de bodega sure strikes a pose!
Credit: Instagram. @brookejaconpetphotography
Just look at how professional this cat’s modeling is. It captures the golden hour perfectly, and that look towards el horizonte near the Yucateco sauce bottles and the Cholula sauce box would surely make a spreadsheet in a fashion magazine. Miau!
We want this on a t-shirt, like as of yesterday!
Credit: Instagram. @gerardoromo via @carmenmt347
What a cool design. It is influenced by pop art and yet captures the magnificence of bodega cats. Can we buy a t-shirt or poster now, please? Take our money
Credit: Instagram. @sellinggotham
Ohh la la! No bad luck at all bumping into this amazing New York scene, with fresh tulips and a gorgeous black cat. Can it get more urban chic than this?
Ask Nelson, if you can wake him up that is
Credit: Instagram. @elctwit
Nelson seems to have an appointed role in customer service, but he also seems to not give a damn. Good for him. Long, restful periods of sleep are important for any employee.
Come back soon, have a nice day!
Credit: Instagram. @lizbreeezy
We would totally come back to this shop if this awesome one-eyed cat was there to bid us goodbye. We love that he is having a happy life, as evidenced by his lovely panza. We just want to scratch his tummy!
Bodega cat in training
Credit: Instagram. @jolenesiana
This kitten has all the necessary attributes to become a great bodega cat: the posture, the intensity in his gaze and a very healthy dose of cuteness. We can’t wait to see where his career takes him!
Hipster bodega cats, of course, giving us all the High Fidelity vibes
Credit: Instagram. @castleblackpaw
This super hipster gatito lives in a record store that sells vinyl and of course wears a jeans vest. He has that Marlon Brando air about him and is plain awesome. Can someone sign a sponsorship deal with him already?
Last but not least: the smart cat who found summer relief in the fridge
Credit: Instagram. @fernandothebodegacat
New York can get pretty hot in the summer, and muyhumid, so Fernando found the perfect spot inside the fridge. If it is beer o’clock he can just crack open a Red Stripe and feel the sweet flavors of Jamaica travel his furry body.