On Thursday evening, Brookswood off-leash dog park was full of four-legged friends and dozens of people.
They were there to support the owners of the six dogs who were mysteriously taken from the off-leash park last Tuesday. The park is located at 206 Street and 44 Avenue.
As of Friday, there was no trace of the six larger dogs that were taken May 13 from the back of a dogwalker’s pickup truck, while it was parked at the popular park.
All of the dogs and the dogwalker are from the Tsawwassen/Ladner area.
Local celebrity Sarah Daniels, host of HGTV’s Urban Suburban, is offering $5,000 cash for tips leading to the safe return of six dogs stolen.
“I know that dogs and even cats are a part of our family. Would you wanna help?” she writes on her Facebook page. “Let’s get this done.”
It’s a highly unusual case, where there has been no trace of the dogs since they were suspected of being taken from the back of the dogwalker’s closed canopy.
“Some tips have come in and will be followed up on,” said Langley RCMP Cpl. Holly Marks on Thursday. “It is strange that such big dogs wouldn’t be noticed by now.”
How all the dogs were convinced to be removed from the back of the truck in such a short time frame, without being scared or even aggressive with strangers, is part of the puzzle in this case.
So far there haven’t been any witnesses to the crime, said police.
But someone knows something and the hope is they will do the right thing and call police and/or return the dogs, even to the local Patti Dale animal shelter.
Sadly, scammers are contacting the dog owners pretending to have the dogs and willing to return them for a fee.
The dog walker involved, Emma Paulsen, is also a victim in this. Her dog Salty, the border collie, was one of the dogs taken from the back of her truck.
Some speculate it is an extremist dog rescue group who didn’t like that the dogs were inside her canopy on a hot day.
Police say they would follow up on that if there was a sufficient tip leading towards one of those groups.
LAPS animal shelter manager Sean Baker said this is one of the oddest situations he has heard of in his career.
“The logistics of six big dogs going missing is challenging to understand, no matter which angle you look at it,” said Baker.
If the dogs escaped, LAPS would have been called, he said.
“We didn’t get one call about dogs running wild that day,” said Baker.
If the dogs were stolen, “how do you handle six big dogs in such a short time,” asks Baker. Not all the dogs would have gone willingly, he speculates.
LAPS staff are on alert about the dogs.
Baker’s hearts go out to the owners.
“These dogs wouldn’t have been stolen to be resold. While they hold a lot of value to their owners, they aren’t puppies so there isn’t a lot of money to be made here.
“It’s just such a strange situation,” he said.
After a fun day of running around off-leash at the park, Paulsen put the dogs back in her truck, closed the latch on the canopy and left them there so she could use the washroom, said police.
When she returned around 10 minutes later, the canopy had been unlatched and all six dogs were gone. This took place around 1:30 p.m.
She searched the area for hours but wasn’t able to locate any of them, said Marks. Police attended as well and weren’t able to find any trace of the dogs.
“The owners believe their dogs were taken as opposed to having escaped from the truck. The canopy had been latched and when the sitter returned, the canopy was open,” said Marks.
If you know where these dogs are and want the reward, message Daniels on her open Facebook page or call police.
Photos of all the dogs are posted on The Times’ website.
There are also ways to contact the owners through petsearchers.ca and craigslist.
If you wish to remain anonymous call Crimestoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS.
The missing dogs are:
Buddy – A black and white Boston terrier
Mia – A black and white pit bull
Teemo – A grey Bouvier poodle cross
Salty – A border collie
Molly – A grey and black blue heeler/Shepard cross
Oscar – Husky/Rotweiler cross