Durham, N.C. — A Durham family found their pet dog Thursday night after it was stolen in a break-in this week and sold to another family.
Elizabeth Newman said she was hanging flyers about Sophie, the missing 7-pound Yorkshire terrier, on Roxboro Road when Ronald Leathers, a sixth grader at Shepherd Middle School, approached her and said he knew where to find the dog. Leathers led Newman to the home of a family who said they had purchased the dog.
That family returned Sophie to Newman. It wasn't immediately clear how or from whom they bought the yorkie.
Newman said Leathers will receive a $500 reward for reuniting her with Sophie.
Earlier Thursday, WRAL News visited the Newman family’s home, where the living room showed just how hard they were working to find Sophie, who was taken by someone who broke into their home.
Elizabeth Newman and her husband spent hours helping their daughter, Kathyrn Newman, make lost dog posters and calling local animal hospitals to try to find her beloved pet.
“I drove around to every vet that I could think of in Durham and gave them these posters,” said Kathryn Newman, who lives in the Forest Hills neighborhood with her mom and dad.
“I always wanted a Yorkshire terrier,” she said. “It was my dream to have a yorkie.”
Kathryn Newman’s dream came true when her parents gave her the dog as a present when she graduated from middle school nine years ago.
She said she left home for an hour Tuesday when a burglar broke in by throwing a flower pot through a kitchen window. The house was ransacked.
“The furniture was tossed everywhere and moved around,” Kathryn Newman said. “The drawers were all open.”
Jewelry and electronics were taken. But worst of all, Sophie was missing, too.
“Eventually, we found a leash had been stolen as well when we started going through everything, which leads us to believe they took her,” Kathryn Newman said.
She said neighbors rallied to help, spreading the word about the missing pup.
“That’s my baby,” she said. “She’s been a big part of my life for a long time, so it’s hard.”