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Reward offered for stolen puppy
By News Channel 8's Jamie Muro
Posted June 24, 2008
Updated 10:55 PM
Meriden (WTNH) _ It's feared a puppy, stolen from a local animal shelter, may soon find itself inside a dog fighting ring. That's one of the concerns following a break-in at the Meriden Humane Society.
It was on Prince Street in Meriden, somewhere in the woods, where six-week-old Pit Bull puppy Cameron was discovered. But not long after she came to the Meriden Humane Society, she was gone, and it had nothing to do with adoption.
But to get to the dog, whoever did this first dealt with the cats. He or she entered through the cat enclosure, through the window, into the cat room and then down the hall to take Cameron -- a puppy who is not well.
"She had just had surgery on a severe hernia that had been compromised and she needed additional surgery after that," Jillian Cheney, of the Meriden Humane Society, said. "She had a severe infection from an attack she had incurred earlier that had been treated."
After the dog-napping, the entrance that was used became the exit. But now, a new problem: the window was left open and more than 60 cats ventured out into the surrounding woods to explore.
There is concern a cat's natural urge to be curious, to explore, will lead them right to a busy Interstate 91.
"With the thunderstorm last night, we are concerned they might have fled," Cheney said.
So now, the staff is in the midst of two operations by setting traps for dozens and dozens of cats, and asking anyone and everyone to keep and eye out for Cameron. A dog that seemingly escaped a harsh life in the woods, only to return to the unknown by an unknown suspect.
Cheney had been nursing the little six-week old Pit Bull puppy back to health. She was found in the woods with a bad puncture wound over her eye. Cheney says, there's a good chance she's already been used as a bait dog.
"It looked like she might have been attacked by another dog and she did have very severe fear anxiety of larger dogs," Cheney said.
Many now wonder if the theft of the puppy could shine a spotlight on dog fighting in Meriden. It is always a concern with Pit Bulls and there are indications, this puppy may have already been a victim.
In March of 2007 a dog name Gideon was found abandoned by the side of the road in Middletown. The two-year-old Pit Bull had been used as a bait dog and was repeatedly attacked in the most vicious manner in order to make the other dogs more aggressive. The blood sport is now on the minds of those at the Meriden Humane Society.
"It is here and you know, it's not as prevalent as it is say in like Hartford, New Haven area but we have heard of it, it is an occurrence, it happens in Meriden," Cheney said.
Police are now investigating and though they tell News Channel 8 they have not had any recent reports of dog fighting in Meriden people here fear the worst.
"She needs medical attention, otherwise, her outlook is very bleak," Cheney said.
Anyone with information on the break-in or the whereabouts of any of these missing animals should contact the Meriden Police Department at (203) 630-6201 and/or the Meriden Humane Society at (203) 238-3650.
The reward money is now up to $4,000 for the puppy's safe return.