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Dog inside car stolen from Maple Heights gas station returned safe and sound

Dog inside car stolen from Maple Heights gas station found safe and sound
Dog inside car stolen from Maple Heights gas station found safe and sound(WOIO)
Published: Oct. 26, 2021 at 10:03 PM EDT
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MAPLE HEIGHTS, Ohio (WOIO) - A family can finally breathe a sigh of relief knowing their beloved dog is back home where he belongs nearly a week after he was taken by car thieves while still in the backseat.

Dog inside car stolen from Maple Heights gas station found safe and sound
Dog inside car stolen from Maple Heights gas station found safe and sound(WOIO)

The family wasn’t worried about their car that was stolen at the Maple Heights Sunoco on Warrensville Center Road on Oct. 20... they only cared about their furry best friend.

“He’s my companion, my partner in crime, and I don’t know where he is and I just want him back,” brokenhearted owner Elizabeth Perry told 19 News the day after he was stolen. “I don’t care about the car, we don’t care about material things, we just want him back.”

[ Family pleas for return of dog inside car stolen from Maple Heights gas station ]

She considers her 4-year-old black miniature Goldendoodle named Sirius “Kota” Black to be her furry son and an irreplaceable member of her family.

Since the theft, her family had spent every moment searching for her pup.

“We’ve been putting him on Facebook, calling friends, texting friends, putting him on on Instagram, we’ve had alert for a pet Amber alert, we’ve called Shaker Heights, we’ve gone to Bedford police, going to Maple Heights Police,” Perry said back on Oct. 21.

[ Reward offered for return of pup stolen in Maple Heights ]

On Oct. 26, this family was made whole again thanks to a Good Samaritan and a 19 News viewer.

The same day Kota was stolen, a woman spotted him walking by himself on Northfield Road almost a mile away from the gas station he was taken from.

She opened her car door and Kota jumped right in.

Thinking he may have escaped from an apartment at the Southgate Towers nearby, the woman took photos of Kota and posted flyers in the area.

Soon after, that Good Samaritan’s daughter had a birthday party where Kota snuck into a few pictures.

When a 19 News viewer saw Kota in the party pictures posted on social media, they immediately recognized him from the stories of the family pleading for his safe return.

The Good Samaritan then called Maple Heights Police asking if the dog she had found was in fact the missing Kota.

When police confirmed, she brought Kota to the Maple Heights Police station at 6 p.m. on Oct. 26 to be reunited with his family.

Dog inside car stolen from Maple Heights gas station found safe and sound
Dog inside car stolen from Maple Heights gas station found safe and sound(WOIO)
Dog inside car stolen from Maple Heights gas station found safe and sound
Dog inside car stolen from Maple Heights gas station found safe and sound(WOIO)
Dog inside car stolen from Maple Heights gas station found safe and sound
Dog inside car stolen from Maple Heights gas station found safe and sound(WOIO)

Perry said Kota is doing just fine after getting a nice bath as soon as he got home and has already been playing with his ball in between jumping for joy with this family.

Dog inside car stolen from Maple Heights gas station found safe and sound
Dog inside car stolen from Maple Heights gas station found safe and sound(WOIO)

Surveillance video obtained by 19 News shows the thief took off in the car with Kota in the back seat.

“My nephew was at a gas station. Went in, when he came back the car was gone,” Perry explained.

The car has since been recovered, but police still need the community’s help with bringing the thief to justice.

Call police have any information on who may have stolen the car and Kota.

Family pleas for return of dog inside car stolen from Maple Heights gas station
Family pleas for return of dog inside car stolen from Maple Heights gas station

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