UPDATE: Beagle Puppy Stolen by a Thief Who Considered it a Rescue Has Been Returned

After making a quick stop while on a road trip, a man returned to find a note in the place where his puppy should have been.

By | Posted: May 19, 2014, 8 a.m. PST

Update: Charlie Returned

Charlie the Beagle has been returned to his David Gulzadeh after being taken from his owners parked car outside of a Costco in Roseville on Thursday afternoon. News10 reports that a young couple brought Charlie to an Auburn animal shelter on Saturday morning were he was reunited with his owner.

Police originally believed that the thief may have been a man in his 60’s who entered a nearby tire shop agitated and complaining about seeing the puppy in the hot car. It is unclear who took Charlie or how the couple that returned him to the animal shelter may be connected to the incident. One thing is for sure though, Gulzadeh is happy to have the puppy home.


Posted: May 16, 2014

Before you read this, you should know two things about me. I have a French Bulldog who I am afraid to leave anywhere he doesn’t have air conditioning or a personal fan, and I have an irrational (maybe rational?) fear of him being stolen. I’ve never had a dog stolen, it’s just a thing I have; anyhow on to the story that as you can imagine, will haunt my dreams for the reasons listed above.

David Gulzadah’s was on a road trip from San Jose, Calif. to Tahoe when about half way he decided to make a stop at Costco for supplies. Unable to bring his puppy, Charlie, inside, he left him in the car, which according to a report by KCRA.com, police say was parked in a well-shaded area with windows rolled down a few inches.

In the store for 15-20 minutes, he returned to find Charlie gone. In his place were the dog’s collar and a note that read "Water your dog, or leave at home.”

Police believe that the thief may have been a man in his 60’s who entered a nearby tire shop agitated and complaining about seeing the puppy in the hot car. While the staff at the tire center went to investigate, the man left and Gulzadah returned to his car to find Charlie gone.

Gulzadeh just wants the puppy back. He told police he won't press charges if Charlie is returned safely. Anyone with information is asked to call 916-774-5000.

Charlie the Beagle puppy. Photo from fox40

The story will surely spark debate over who was in the wrong, bringing up all kinds of questions: Was it in fact too hot? Was the thief being over cautious? Is it ever okay to take a dog from another person's car? Who is the bad guy in this story?

The fact is none of us where there and there isn’t enough information to judge the conditions of what occurred. But there are certainly a couple of lessons to be taken from this story:

  •  Don’t leave your dog in a hot car. According to a study on car temperatures from Pediatrics, "Vehicles heat up rapidly, with the majority of the temperature rise occurring within the first 15 to 30 minutes. Leaving the windows opened slightly does not significantly slow the heating process or decrease the maximum temperature attained.”

Heat Safety Every Dog Owner Should Know>>

  • Don’t take another person's dog. If you witness a dog in any kind of concerning situation call the police. It might be tempting to remove the dog from the situation, but unless he is in very immediate danger, always let police or animal control handle the situation.

What to Do When You See Dog Abuse>>

"If you encounter something like this, you can’t go taking someone else’s personal property,” Sergeant Jason Bosworth with Roseville Police tells Fox40.com. "It could be considered theft.”

So what is a dog owner to do?

As mentioned before, with a smoosh-face dog, I don’t mess around when it comes to leaving him in the car on a warm day, even if that means he gets left behind more often than either of us would like. For road trips, my husband and I have a method: one drives our nicely chilled frenchie in circles, while the other goes to the bathroom or grabs snacks.

That being said, I have on many occasions wondered – what did I do when I was alone?

Oh yes, that’s right. I was that crazy person carrying a 28 pound Bulldog over my shoulder into the dog-friendliest looking place I could find, while praying we’d be able to make our stop without getting kicked out. (This is probably why I can never own a larger dog.)  On the off chance I did leave him the car, it was because I believed 100% that he would be safe and cool and if a stranger doubted my decision making skills, I would hope they would call the police before taking my beloved Mr. Huggs for good.

What do you do when you are traveling alone with your dog? Have you even encountered a situation where you thought a dog shouldn’t be in a car? Or thought your dog was okay, but had someone tell you otherwise? Tell us in the comments below.

Follow Sam on Twitter @HuggMe



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Melissa - 177435   Harrison, AR

5/18/2014 1:00:30 PM

he WAS returned!!! just did some searching and the man brought him back to a shelter who contacted authorities and reunited charlie with his dad :)

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Melissa - 177435   Harrison, AR

5/18/2014 12:53:58 PM

can we please get an update on this story, did the man get his charlie back?? that is horrible. i understand looking out for any animals in danger, but if he were planning on being this direct and getting the puppy out of the car, he should have just gotten him out and made sure he was cool and safe and waited for the owner to come out! i feel awful for the owner, my only kid is my beagle also, and this just breaks my heart!! i hope he got his puppy back..

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Melian and Tiny   Etna, CA

5/17/2014 12:06:58 AM

I think it's okay to leave my dog in a hot car for just a few minutes, 5min or less, if the windows are open. But never when it's blasting summer heat. In that case I have a friend go in the store and I walk my dog on a leash and we check out the smells.

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