A Denver family whose dog was stolen right from their front yard has been reunited with their beloved pet 5 days after the theft.
Last week, a video of a Shih Tzu being stolen directly from her front yard went viral after the owners put out a plea to the public to help them get her back.
Zoe, who is 7 months old, was relaxing in the family’s front yard with a long leash on her to keep her from roaming.
Her dad, Yannick Hispa, works from home and keeps a close eye on the pup.
But just as he turned away to take a phone call, the family’s worst nightmare occurred: a stranger pulled up in a truck, ran toward the dog, stole her, and sped off. A neighbor was heard yelling at the stranger, and Hispa took off to chase him. But it was too late.
The ordeal was all captured on video, thanks to the Hispas having installed a doorbell camera.
They took to social media immediately, begging the public to spread the video around and help them get their dog back.
The family promised a reward and said that no questions would be asked if they could just have their gentle sweet pup back at home.
Thankfully, that worked. The video went viral, and it must have spooked the dognappers, because Zoe was just found Sunday night.
A good Samaritan found the dog wandering around a Denver park. Due to her appearance, he believed she may have been run over by a car.
She was immediately returned to the family, and the kind hero refused the cash reward. He had seen the flyer they posted and simply wanted to see Zoe home, safe and sound.
The family was horrified at the dog’s appearance. She couldn’t stand up, wouldn’t eat, was extremely dehydrated, and was suffering from an infection along with hypothermia.
The Hispas immediately transported her to the veterinarian, where she continues to receive treatment for the abuse she suffered at the hands of these unknown and cruel criminals.
The Hispas believe that the dognappers were attempting to sell Zoe. Elisabeth Hispa, Zoe’s mom, had seen two ads posted for shih tzus for sale which matched Zoe’s description.
In addition, Yannick recounted (with video evidence) the fact that days earlier, a strange woman had circled around their house and finally approached to pet Zoe. Yannick had actually asked her to get away from the dog and off his property, telling her it was inappropriate to be there.
The woman said she was an animal caregiver who wondered if she could take Zoe for a walk. Yannick said he absolutely refused the request, and thought it very strange.
Zoe is now being nursed back to health at home. The children take turns syringe-feeding her.
Though her recovery isn’t easy, the family is just grateful to have her back home alive.
This ordeal has been immensely hard on them. They love Zoe, and were devastated when she went missing.
The Denver police are still searching for the suspects.
The medical bills and needs are so costly for Zoe that the family has started a GoFundMe page to help fund the mounting costs of the care she needs.
Watch the original video of the kidnapping, here.