NEW YORK (CBS 2) — A new puppy finally made it to her new home in the Tri-State area Saturday after a major mix-up at the airlines – and nobody knew where she was for hours.

The height of happiness followed the depths of despair felt by Joe DiTomaso of Queens, reports CBS 2’s Dave Carlin.

Hours of agonizing uncertainty led up to the moment when airline workers finally handed over his puppy, named Blue.

DiTomaso got to see Blue for the first time Saturday. He bought her from a man in Alabama and made flight arrangements on Delta Airlines, but last night – when he went to pick her up at John F. Kennedy International Airport – she wasn’t on the flight.

“Every person we spoke with, they couldn’t find her. It was unbelievable,” DiTomaso said.

DiTomaso waited at the airport from 8 p.m. Friday until 2 a.m. Saturday morning, the entire time furious with Delta – and fearing the worst.

“I was really worried that someone either took her, or she was hanging out on a carousel somewhere and nobody was feeding her,” he said.

After a sleepless night for the DiTomaso family, the phone rang – it was Delta with the good news. Blue was in Atlanta, and she was safe.

“Finally, one guy found her sitting in a room and called us,” DiTomaso said.

There’s no word on what caused the mix-up, but a Delta spokesperson told CBS 2 the airline “apologizes for the delay,” and that “Delta is investigating the cause.”

DiTomaso is sharing his story with CBS 2 in the hopes that it will result in all airlines doing a better job of keeping track of animals.

He was so angry about the situation that he was seeing red, but now he’s only seeing Blue, grateful for what is both a happy ending and a new beginning.

A Delta spokeswoman would only say the dog was found in Atlanta at a layover point.

Dave Carlin