Yesterday I received an email with the words "URGENT ALERT - JOHNSON CITY, TN: STOLEN DOG ALERT" in the subject line. I usually delete these right away because they signal massive cross-posting and from my experience, often contain mis-information.
I read this one; the sender asked me to post this ALERT on my blog. I didn't post it at the time because I never post anything that's not sent to me directly by someone with first-hand information or until I can verify the facts for myself.
Today I went to the website of Canine Hope Rescue and read the following:
Since the information about the stolen dogs has been so successfully reposted to distribute the information, I have chosen to try and redo that effort once more.
There are misinformed emails and posts circulating and I would like to clarify some information.
On Thursday, the person who made the report of the robbery and attack was arrested for filing a false police report. There was a robbery, however there was no attack and she did not see anyone "taking" the dogs. The false report is not about the dogs missing, but is in relation to her report of having been confronted and attacked. When she discovered the robbery the dogs were gone and there was no one there except her.
In addition to the false report other charges were made against her, myself and my husband. Out of the many dogs in our care there were three that were very thin. Animal Control chose to make charges due to the condition of the area at the time of the report and the three thin dogs. This resulted in 8 counts against us. All rescues at our facility were removed and we fully released them to Animal Control knowing that they would spend less time there if we did. We have cooperated thoroughly with Animal Control to assure the best for those taken.
I want to be honest with the rescue and dog loving community so that the focus of this situation can go away from the fact there was a false report about seeing someone and being attacked and back to the fact that there are 13 very sweet and trusting dogs that are out there and we do not know where. They NEED TO BE FOUND.
There are 10 Dobermans, a female black labrador, and a min pin. All are friendly and approachable. All need the help of everyone to still get out the word.
We have had calls of someone seeing 2 friendly Dobermans in the Towne Acres area of Johnson City, 2 more in the highway area of Johnson City to Elizabethton, as well as a small black dog with another small dog being seen in Johnson City. Also that they could be being held in the Jonesborough, TN area. It is important that if any Dobermans, a lab or min pin or medium shepherd mix are seen that a call is made immediately to the Johnson City Animal Shelter so they can look for them. If you feel you can approach them, please leash them or confine them to an area until the authorities get there.
While reports of these dogs are being made in the area, they may not be the dogs that are missing. There is still the chance that they have been removed from the area. So if you are outside of the East TN area, please keep looking for them.
We are deeply sorry that this situation has occurred. We understand the questions, frustration and misunderstanding due to the false report, but the fact remains that the dogs are missing.
My husband and I have dedicated much of our hearts and ourselves over many years to the dog community and rescue community, we have successfully placed many wonderful dogs in very loving homes, helped secure placement of dogs on death row, connected people to one another in order to help more, and educated the public about rescues and dogs in need. We have referred, helped, cared for, transported, and rescued more dogs than we can count. Please judge us by the experiences of those years, our work with you in those experiences, and know that we are saddened that the report has slowed the effort that was in progress to find the dogs. Please keep looking, keep posting for their return to safety.
We appreciate your continued cooperation in the search for these dogs.
If you see them please contact the Johnson City Animal Shelter at 423 926 8769 immediately, give them specific information about where the dogs are or have been seen.
If you have any information about the theft of the dogs please contact the Johnson City Police Department at 423 434 6168 or Crimestoppers at 423 434 6158.
...I'm still not sure if the dogs were stolen or not, but the important thing is that 13 friendly, trusting dogs are missing in or around Johnson City, Tennessee and need to be found. Therefore, please alert those within the animal rescue community of northeastern Tennessee to be on the lookout. Thank you.