Two Chihuahuas stolen from the boot of their owner’s Mercedes while she shopped at Sainsbury's have returned home four months later – in exchange for a 'reward' of £5,000.
By, 9 Jul 2019
As Wamiz reported back in March, Dinky and Doris were ‘dognapped’ from the Sainsbury’s car park at Hinckley's Crescent in Hinkley, Leicestershire, while owner Katy Mercer completed a 90-minute big shop in the vicar’s choice supermarket.
Noting that the dogs were like her “children” and that they had medical needs to which the dognapper might fail to attend, Mercer offered a series of increasingly enticing rewards for their return. Her family distributed over 20,000 leaflets and banners around the locality, and the campaign’s Facebook group attracted a substantial following of concerned dog-lovers.
But she was on holiday in Greece when news of the dogs’ reappearance came.
Birthday candle wish
“We had set up a Facebook site to help find the dogs and a friend was running it while Fraser and I went on holiday for a break,” Mercer told LeicestershireLive. “On the Wednesday it was my birthday and we went out for meal. I had a birthday cake with a candle in it.
“I blew out the candle and made a wish that Dinky and Doris could come back to me.”
The candle-blowing ritual proved to be effective:
“Within 24 hours,” Mercer went on, “I got the call that they had been found. It just shows that wishes do sometimes come true.”
The dogs are believed to be in good health although pictures of them after the ordeal suggest that they have become more hardened and cynical.
While Mercer never fully gave up hope, she witnessed the full awfulness of the human animal during the months between leaving her Chihuahuas in the boot of her car and going away on holiday.
“I had lots of hoax calls,” she said, “and even horrible people, saying they had killed my dogs but I also had a majority of contacts from really nice people who were very supportive.
“They told me to never give up and really gave me strength and I am so grateful for that. My getting Dinky and Doris back home safe is proof of that.”
Reward not a ransom
Dinky and Doris’s ordeal came to an end after a caller who had apparently bought the dogs unaware of their plight contacted the Bring Dinky and Doris Home Facebook group (now renamed ‘Dinky and Doris are safe xxx’) to cash in the £5,000 ‘reward.’
Honouring Mercer’s ‘no questions asked’ plea, representatives visited a property in the West Midlands to verify the dogs’ identity.
“She had to wait there until I deposited the £5,000 in a bank account and then she was allowed to leave with my dogs,” continued Mercer.
“We got an early flight home on the Friday and I was reunited with my babies in the arrivals lounge at East Midlands Airport.
“I have never been so happy. I wept buckets.”
Readers are reminded that leaving your dog or dogs alone in the car can result in heatstroke, death, or a very expensive kidnapping.