A Good Samaritan saw what was happening on Hacienda Boulevard in La Puente last Wednesday, called officers, put traffic cones around the dogs and took the video that touched hearts across the country as it made its way around the Internet.
Officers were getting the dogs out of the street at the same time Maggie's family was at the shelter looking for her, said Capt. Aaron Reyes, deputy director of the department.
Before Maggie's family claimed her Monday, the dog was spayed and microchipped. The name of the family was not released.
Maggie's family wasn't the first to show up at the shelter claiming the dog belonged to them. But it was the first family to have papers to prove it and to call the dog Maggie. Even though she was groggy from surgery, the dog responded immediately to her name and the family, Reyes said.
The family will be issued citations for having an unregistered dog and allowing it to run loose and will have to pay nominal room and board costs, Reyes said, but the shelter did the surgery and implanted the microchip for free.
The Good Samaritan who had hoped to adopt her was notified, Reyes said, and his reaction was "understandably bittersweet."
"He had a lot of the same questions we did. How could they not have a license? Had Maggie had an ID tag or microchip, she could have been spayed and been back home last week," Reyes said.
Written by Sue Manning/AP