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Dog-napper grabs family pet

September 3rd, 2003, 01:24 PM
Note left for owner claims animal wasn't well cared for; nine-year-old boy misses Charlotte

Jeff Bell
Times Colonist

The pet-nappers who stole Rebecca Hunt's dog on the weekend left her a note saying they were taking the animal to better owners.

The intruders took the three-year-old collie/German shepherd cross named Charlotte from the Tattersall Drive area home on Friday night or Saturday morning, but came back Monday night to leave the note that made the loss even more upsetting.

"When I got up (Tuesday) they had stuck a note on my car saying they had taken my dog to a better home," said Hunt.

The note was especially disturbing for her nine-year-old son, she said, and put a damper on his first day back at school. She said she had to spend time in hospital recently, and her son has been especially close to the dog because of that.

"The dog has been his companion," she said. "He's pretty devastated."

The note, now in the hands of the Saanich police, implies Charlotte had been mistreated in some way, a notion Hunt can't understand.

"If they feel that she was neglected, they can come and see how the dog is treated."

Far from neglected, Charlotte was routinely kept outdoors in a covered breezeway, tied to a tether that gave her a wide area of movement and access to the yard. Two cats provided company, and the dog often entertained people on the sidewalk by knocking a rubber duck through the fence for them to toss back.

"A lot of the neighbours know her," Hunt said.

She had little doubt from the outset Charlotte was deliberately taken because the dog's tether was held on with a special, clamp-type device that would be hard to slip.

She said she has since been told another dog disappeared in the area a few weeks earlier.

Hunt just wants the family pet home where she belongs.

"If whoever took her is willing to drop her off, I'm fine with that."

Saanich police officers were canvassing the area near Hunt's home Tuesday, going door-to-door to check with neighbours.

Copyright 2003 Times Colonist (Victoria)