GOOD NEWS
05/31/2016 06:37 pm ET

Story Behind Photo Of Cop Asleep Next To Pup He Rescued Is Doggone Sweet

"It was one of those moments that just grab your heart. He was so determined to get her help."

One officer demonstrated that there's more to law enforcement than just fighting crime.   

A photo recently shared on social media features Officer Kareem Garibaldi and a pit bull-boxer mix pup, named Hope, both snoozing at SPCA Florida in Lakeland.

The officer had found the stray puppy under his car last Saturday and rescued it, according to a Facebook post from the Lakeland Police Department. After a 12-hour shift on day three of caring for the dog, the dedicated cop brought the pooch to the SPCA to get checked out and fell asleep by her side.

Hope found a forever home the very day the moving photo was shared. 

"It clearly was a selfless thing to do," Connie Johnson, SPCA shelter safety net manager,  told the Dodo. "He wasn't thinking about getting home to sleep. He was thinking about what he could do to help this puppy survive."

Garibaldi initially saw the dog on the loose outside and looked around the neighborhood for its owner, the police department's post explained. Unable to find the pup's human, the officer took Hope back to the police department, where she stayed until the end of his shift when the pair went home together. 

The next day, Garibaldi spread the word about the pup on social media. On the third day, with no owner in sight, Garibaldi brought the pooch to the vet at the SPCA after his shift and stayed there for over three hours while the vet examined the dog. 

Johnson happened to spot Garibaldi, catching a nap, and snapped the now-famous photo. 

"It was one of those moments that just grab your heart. He was so determined to get her help." Johnson told the Dodo. 

Hope found her happy ending, as the pooch found a home with a dispatcher from the police station. As for the officer, well, his deed didn't go unnoticed. 

"Having worked a long weekend, Officer Garibaldi still found the energy at the end of his shift to help man's best friend," the department wrote on Facebook. 

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