VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. — Turkan Ertugrul, a local veterinarian found her forever friend, Vizzini.
"I rescued my first chihuahua and he's the love of my life," Ertugrul said.
Then, Erturgul decided Vizzini could use a friend too. However, the search for another local chihuahua rescue turned out to be harder than she ever imagined.
"By the time one would end up in the shelter, and I would go to look at it, there's already 10 people on the want list wanting this little dog," Ertugrul said.
She said she started looking online for another pet.
"You see all these chihuahuas in other places available for adoption, and then go back a few days later and they'd been euthanized at these high-kill shelters," Ertugrul said.
That's when she knew something had to be done. About four years ago, Ertugrul started Saver of Souls Pet Rescue, giving around 200 small breed dogs every year a second chance at life.
"I speak for the underdog, the one that's gonna get killed," she said. "If I don't take it, it's gonna die."
The nonprofit is made up of volunteers, like Rebecca Roberto, working around the clock to bring pets closer to their potential new families. "It's very rewarding to see an animal placed in a home that's going to love it forever, just as much as I would," Roberto said. "Because I can't adopt them all, but I can help them find their forever."
One at a time, Saver of Souls Pet Rescue is helping small dogs with big dreams of finding a new place to call home. "Somebody failed them the first time, and we don't want to fail them the second time," Ertugrul said.
Saver of Souls has about 20 small breed dogs up for adoption right now. The nonprofit is also holding a "Pasta and Plant Night," where you can enjoy a spaghetti dinner while creating your own terrarium.
The event is at 5:30 p.m. March 30 at the Deep Creek Ruritan Club in Chesapeake. For more information, email email@example.com or visit their Facebook page.