Layla the Labrador Finds Lottery Ticket, Owner David Zazzoff Wins the Jackpot - Los Angeles Post-ExaminerLos Angeles Post-Examiner

Layla the Labrador Finds Lottery Ticket, Owner David Zazzoff Wins the Jackpot

Image by Sonja Kalee from Pixabay The photo above is not the dog in the story.

David Zazzoff was at the end of his rope and drowning in debt. Missed car payments, a mortgage, and kitchen drawers stuffed with credit card statements made life difficult. He was comforted through these difficult times by his trusted companion, Layla. However, Layla was no ordinary companion, she was actually David’s labrador retriever, but above all, his best friend. 

Layla, the Jack Pot Dog

To relieve stress, David would often take Layla out to walk on the streets of New York City where they lived. The pandemic had made things slow, but this gave David a respite from the turbulence of his financial problems. 

One unassuming day, after reviewing several bills that had come in the mail alerting him of a final notice on his car payment, David needed a pause. He placed a leash on Layla and walked out the door, unaware that he would be returning an altogether new man. 

While they paused for Layla to sniff out a corner where some other city dog had claimed its territory, David noticed something sticking out of Layla’s mouth. He reached over and pulled out the wet and crumbled piece of paper and wiped it off. As it turns out, Layla had found a discarded, or misplaced, lottery ticket. 

The two walked over the nearest convenience store. David felt that since the date on the ticket was recent, it may have been misplaced and never checked. Suddenly Layla’s ears perked up.

“I noticed Layla sit up straight staring at the cashier, but before I could react the alarm sounded,” David said. “It was a jackpot!”

David doesn’t recall the moment too well. “I was in complete shock, I just needed to get home.”

A Post-Pandemic Miracle

David had fallen on hard times during the pandemic. The office where he worked gave the employees the option of severely reduced hours or resignation, and David chose the latter. His car was in danger of being repossessed, and he was behind on his mortgage and credit card bills. 

After the shock wore off and David received notice of his winnings, which he declined to disclose, he started to plan. After all of his debts were paid off, he had one important favor to repay to Layla. 

David is planning a small vacation with Layla to visit the Dominican Republic, her home country, and treat her to all the luxuries a dog can ask for. 

“It’s the least I can do for her, she’s my best friend and I want her to enjoy something that only she made possible,” David said. 

Not many rescue dogs have the same fate Layla has. In fact, many of these dogs do not get adopted and sometimes must be put down, an unfortunate circumstance. However, there are many kind souls who choose to adopt rescue dogs in order to give them a better life than they would have at the often cramped shelters.

Luck Be a Labrador

While Layla may be a common labrador retriever, she wasn’t born in New York, she wasn’t even born in the United States. Layla is a rescue dog from the Dominican Republic, where she was brought to an adoption agency in NYC which is where David found her. 

Fortunately for him, he made it a habit of checking whatever Layla chews on. On the streets of NYC you never know what kind of garbage passers-by leave behind, so it can be dangerous for a curious pup. But sometimes David believes that she sniffed out the lottery ticket since she doesn’t usually pick up papers. 

David doesn’t know what’s next for him. He feels relieved that he’s been able to pay off all his debts and is happy he’ll be able to treat Layla to thank her. 


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