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Stolen Dogs in NC Reward Now At $2200

Updated on November 4, 2010

$5000 Reward For Safe Return

Bellatrix, Dumbledore, Poseidon
Bellatrix, Dumbledore, Poseidon

How these babies went missing

REWARD NOW AT $5000!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

This is a follow up the to story I posted several weeks ago. Please click here for original story of Bellatrix, Dumbledor, and Poseidon.

I've entered this in Tere's own words as to how her dogs were stolen. This is a story that could happen to anyone, so please read it and pass it along to everyone you know. Her babies are still out there.

Money talks, and someone will make a lot of money if they lead Tere to these beautiful dogs.

These dogs are VERY recognizable!

Tere's Story

This is rather lengthy, but I wrote it when on the defensive because of some replies. Edit it as you see fit, and particularly names. I really appreciate you keeping the story alive.

There are so many misconceptions about my stolen pups, that I answered one. For some reason, many people think that since I said I was boating, then the dogs must have gone "overboard." I was not in the ocean on a real island. Nor in the sound. At any rate, I have apparently been unclear, and so feel the need to tell the whole story. So, here it is, as written to a FB friend of a friend who questioned why I had said they were "missing" at first, and "taken" later. For those who care, and are confused, here is what happened:

I chose to say missing in the beginning for the very reason to keep from alienating people. Rescues and shelters and even my AC said that the dogs have been clearly taken, so to state that they have been stolen. I am trying to follow expert advice since I have never been in this position. I live in a very small rural area (Otway). The "water" is 2' deep at high tide, and mud at low. I live on that creek. The "island" is a small patch of woods at the end of the peninsula on the other side of my creek.

For 10 years, almost every weekend, I take the kids over to give them a change of scenery, and I sit in the boat and read. After about an hour, they come back to the boat, and we leave. Or I continue to read and they walk the 5 minutes or swim the 5 minutes home. Or they get into the boat and watch the world go by until I am ready to leave. For 10 years I let them be "dogs" this way, and never a single glitch.

There are very few property owners in this area. Along about a 5 mile stretch, there are maybe 6 owners. Across the main road, from which the "island" is about 2 miles, there are more owners, but with small lots that back up to a farm system that is thousands of acres. The pups know all of this area well. All of the neighbors know my pups, and have been looking for them diligently. They don't run off. Never have. They live in a 1.2 acre fenced wooded area, with another 32 acres across the dirt road that we hike regularly. They don't want or need to roam. They are air condition/leather couch/king sized bed pups.

On the 29th, as they were playing (all three littermates and my cattle dog - total 4 dogs) there were gunshots from the next property to the east, a 32 acre lot owned by the local gun shop owners. There is a shooting range there, so there are frequent shots. But the owners were out of town, and it is a weekend home anyway, so there are frequent trespassers. I feel sure that is what the shots came from. There was a series of 6 or 7, and then a couple of seconds later, a series of 4 shots. That was not target practice, and so it got my attention. Sirius, my alpha male, came running thru the woods and jumped into the boat. The other three did not. I called, whistled their whistle, and ran to the shore to look thru the woods.

My pups had vaporized. I chose to believe that they had spooked from the shots. If they had spooked, they would have come to the boat, or run home, or swam home. But they were no where. I said they were "missing" to get people to help. The keeper of the duck impoundments to the east has helped tremendously, letting me drive the dike walls with him, and driving them himself 3x daily. There was no one there that weekend, as the ducks are still young. The farm system across the road has let me and Sirius (my alpha male) walk it daily, and drive it, and they have given flyers to their managers, combine drivers, and truckers.

The owners of the property where the shots came from have searched for anything out of line, and let me walk the property and woods daily. The acreage at the end of the road, even tho 3 miles from the "island" is uninhabited, cleared property. I have walked it daily. I have walked the island 28 times. I have walked a hunt club property (unbeknownst to them) with Sirius many times, tho they are not deer hunting yet, and no one is there. And it is about 10 miles from the island. I have walked, biked, driven, and boated the area daily looking for any indication of my dogs in any way - vultures, smells of cadavers, paw prints in the sand and sandy roads thru the woods, dog poo, blood, etc. Neither I, nor my neighbors, nor the sheriff deputy, nor animal control, have found anything at all. No one has sighted any of my pups, which is utterly absurd in this area. Animal Control Director (15 yr) told me from the 2nd day that the dogs had been taken, because this is unprecedented to have 3 dogs wandering and no one see any of them. If it was one dog, for no one to have seen it for a few days ... maybe. But from the 2nd day, I have had this county and the adjacent county papered from one end to another.

It has been regularly announced on local radio. From the 1st day it has been on Craigslist, and emailed with flyer to every shelter, vet, animal control, pd, and sheriff dept, humane society in the state. After a few days, when I quit also searching for eyes in the headlights at night, I began posting on everything on the web I could find. There has been one newspaper article written, and another coming. Five television stations have now been contacted, but not yet responded. I realize you do not know where I live, but with all of this visibility, and not only have none of the three pups been seen, but neither has AC found a dog hit by a car, and the lunar tides for the 2 weeks following the incident did not wash bodies into the high marsh or woods - my dogs were simply stolen. I knew from the get-go that if the pups had been spooked, they would have run or swam home or to the boat. I have raised the two boys from 7 weeks to 10.5 years - I know them. But I chose to think positively. I can do so no more.

My focus now is on that which I chose to disbelieve, but about which I have learned entirely too much since this began. North Carolina has terrible dog fighting laws. There are several rings 30 minutes away. There are several more beginning about 2 hours away. Law enforcement will do nothing, saying that the DA will not prosecute. AC for the counties in which the practices are located say that they are not willing to get shot, so will not go into the areas. So everyone overlooks it. And for the biggest contradiction I have heard in my life, try this: AC, HS, locals, Sheriff DP, Rescues all tell me - the fighting groups begin cruising to steal dogs, particularly those like my breed (boxer mixes looking pit) this time of year. They do this to use the "stolen" pups as bait (and to go into that more will make me cry - again), to get their fighting dogs into shape ... wait for it ... for the Christmas Season. They fight in Dec. to make money for Christmas. So yes, I said they were missing, then taken, but have come to accept that which the experts have told me from the beginning. My precious babies have been STOLEN, and are in harm's way. The other option I have learned is that the I-95 corridor is a huge transport system for stolen dogs, to take north and sell. I find that a little more difficult to believe because of the ages of 2 of my 3 pups, but nothing is out of consideration.

For the past few days, I have been writing rescues and shelters in NJ, NY, MD. Also, trying to contact all labs doing research on animals in the northern states. Very time consuming, but I am at my wit's end, and have to continue every venue I can think of. Someone mentioned contacting Animal Planet today, so that is next on my list. The one positive thing to have come out of this horrendous experience is that I have found an extremely loving, devoted, and generous animal community across this country, and even world. That, at least, is encouraging.

Tere Barrett

Please check out the below ad in USA. It details the reward and has more photos and other information, along with contact info for Tere. Lets do all we can to get Tere's dogs back!

Elisa Black-Taylor

Elisa is a regular contributor to


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    • profile image

      Karen 6 years ago

      You are posted on my FB page. If there is anything else I can do just ask. I keep watch there are a lot of stolen dogs in Viginia as well. I vote for tougher animal cruelty penalties. Stay strong I pray for their safe return.

    • Elisa Taylor profile image

      Elisa Black-Taylor 7 years ago from The beautiful Carolina's

      REWARD INCREASED NOVEMBER 3, 2010 TO $5000!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    • jtrader profile image

      jtrader 7 years ago

      Hi Elisa

      I am so sorry to hear about this.

      This makes my heart grieve.

      Our dog was stolen once, by somebody in our neighbourhood.

      Fortunately we were able to find him but when we did he was underfed and dirty.

      I hope your story has a good ending. By campaigning stronger laws can be put in place.

    • profile image

      debbie 7 years ago

      I do know how you feel. My 3 month old yorkie poo was stolen in June 2009. It was 2 days before her micro-chipping and last shots appointment. I did everything that was recommended. I had her for one month. She was never returned, no physical injury evidence was ever found, and I never saw her again. I searched every day for 4 months and still look. I thought that I would die. I prayed that at least someone had her and would love her. The idea that someone came and took something living and precious to someone else is nothing but cruel. It breaks my heart for you and I pray that you will see your babies again.

    • profile image

      Tada 7 years ago

      Oh no!! Didn't Vick bring the horrors of dog fighting to our attention enough? Animals ARE as important to protect as humans- they do so much for us. The names of the dogs just touch me- she clearly cares very much about her dogs- great idea about contacting Oprah and Animal Planet. Also try any movie stars that live in your area that regularly Twitter, maybe they can retweet about this situation and grab more media attention. Do the local news stations (and regional ones, too) talk about it? Give them a call, I'm sure they would like to spread the news so everyone can help look. Can't the police be more actively involved as this is THEFT? And snoop around for rumors of where dog fighting circles are?? Animal Planet did a feature on illegal puppy mills, so this is def close enough. Praying that all three are reunited with their brother and mother ASAP!

    • profile image

      Trent 7 years ago

      This is SOOO horrible and my thoughts and prayers are with you. I can't even imagine if this had been my babies. There will, no doubt, be posts bashing what I'm going to say but if these were kids there would be amber alerts all over the country. Maybe we need "Blue Alerts" for dogs!? I know every dog lover in the country would be willing to pass these along if they heard about them. And something really needs to be done about these issues. ESPECIALLY the ones of the enforcement agencies not doing anything about the perpetrators!!! That to me is just as horrifying as if they were standing there watching the horrors they are doing to the dogs.... What a sad, sad world. Again, my heart is with you and your precious children in hopes they find their way home somehow.

    • profile image

      Cary 7 years ago

      This is HORRIFIC! I hope to god that something comes up for you, just so you can stop going insane, if nothing else! I have had 2 of my pups stolen from my car (locked.. i thought at least) whats even worse was that I was actually homeless due to hurricane Katrina and then to lose my babies too! It was pure HELL! At the time I was young but had saved up ALL of the money I made to buy the precious shih-tzu's that I ADORED! I was maybe 18 at the time but I searched the beach high and low, I got a dog whistle and tried to call them to see if they would bark if they heard the high pitched sound(In a hotel room maybe.. I had to try it all) I called every shelter , went to the closest ones to see if some one dropped em there, I even considered calling the radio stations as well.. but didn't have the guts. I was hysterically crying. I was exhausted and drained. I called the police.. I asked the drunks on the streets lol.. The prob was that it was during a stupid shrimp festival and people were just everywhere.. It sickens me that someone can do this. It was as if I had lost a child.I couldn't even begin to think of how my dear Bella and Koby were holding up. I just hope that it was someone that thought I was neglecting them (although of course I was not, they were in the car for minutes, and well groomed and obviously healthy animals) .. If that is the case, atleast they weren't totally evil A-holes that would torture my babies.. I hope they are happy and healthy and not used as mass puppy producers in some jerks puppy mill

    • Pamela99 profile image

      Pamela Oglesby 7 years ago from United States

      Elisa, My heart breaks for your pain and I so hope you recover your dogs. I do understand why there are no laws stopping these people from having dog fights. I can think of no printable words to describe what I think of people who partake in they type of violence. I pray you find your dogs soon.

    • Elisa Taylor profile image

      Elisa Black-Taylor 7 years ago from The beautiful Carolina's

      RescueInk was sent both stories just in case they could help

    • profile image

      Lileem 7 years ago

      I'm afraid I can't add anything financially right now as I'm struggling, but if there is a way to raise some more money and up the reward it would be a good idea. I'm going to try to see how I can cross-post this on my Facebook and highly recommend that you get in touch with the group "RescueInk" . They are good and they know people and are experienced with finding and rescuing dogs that go missing this way. My first thought was also omg someone nabbed them for bait dogs. Please get in touch with the RescueInk guys -- they care and they're the best at what they do! I'll be praying for you and your pups.. I'm so so sorry.

    • profile image

      Lori Sheppard 7 years ago

      My heart breaks for you and your dogs. Praying for their safety and quick return home.

    • profile image

      Pat 7 years ago

      My heart goes out to you. Our animals are no longer safe anywhere. 5 years ago two (maybe more) boys in their late teens broke into my home while I was gone for only a couple of hours and took my beloved parrots. Both birds had been with me for over twenty years. The thieves were identified but thanks to our current laws were never forced to reveal the whereabouts of the birds. One is said to have stressed and died within days of being taken and no word about the other. One of the boys wasprosecuted and paid restitution. This did nothing for my health which went south immediately upon the discovery of the theft. I had bronchitis for 9 weeks and every year since. I never had it before. I pray for you and your pups. Not knowing is the worst part.

    • Elisa Taylor profile image

      Elisa Black-Taylor 7 years ago from The beautiful Carolina's

      There is now a FB page called Bring 3 Stolen NC Dogs Home-$2000 Reward. Just started today. Continue to crosspost please

    • profile image

      Wandalee Collicutt 7 years ago

      I was horrified when I first heard of these 3 babies... they do not look their age I must add... One can easily see they have been well cared for. I am a cross poster. I share and post many different animals daily throughout the USA and Canada and have been post these guys daily some times several times a day. I never knew the whole story until today. Oct 9th 2010. I will post this article and hopefully get more interested... I pray these guys are alright... knowing that one of them did manage to come home makes me wonder if (and I hate saying this, I don't like upsetting anyone) but what if one or more were hit or shot at. Would the 3 have stuck together if they were frightened or wounded? How deep is the wooded area near you. Are there any types of shelter, like a small den of hole in a pile to large rocks? Any place they may have been able to take shelter. One would think that after hearing gunshots that they would have ran in shear fear and if one or more were hit, then they may have gotten lost if they ran outside their usually area. Too bad there are no Amber Alerts for missing and stolen animals. I know for fact that some dogs and survive what most humans would have died from, lost dogs lasting months or ever year in the woods then being found. So all hope is not lost. Were they micro-chipped? I pray that they have not fallen into the wrong hands and that at worst they did make it into a shelter and they were adopted to good loving New homes. In any case I will continue you share their story and will always try to have the reward updated. Please feel free to add me as friend No-Abuse Wanda-Cross-poster on facebook. God be with these babies on their journey, may it lead them home.

    • profile image

      surendra prasad 7 years ago

      Dear Tere,

      I sincerely hope you get your kids back. Posted on facebook and praying for them.

    • juellis profile image

      juellis 7 years ago

      I lost my dog for 3 week (long story). I felt like my heart had been torn out. I hope you get your babies home safe and sound soon!! xx

    • profile image

      Rebecca Clark-Homer 7 years ago

      Im so VERY VERY sorry for you & for your pups. I cannot IMAGINE how you feel ... not KNOWING.

      I pray that by some miricale your babies are returned to you, unharmed. You are most certainly doing anything you can to find them. Much more than many would do in this world. & screw the people who are negative about this situation. Its obvious they are very well loved & beautiful dogs. I often let mine run on our beaches, & yes, they end up out of my site for short periods. They too always come back. But thank you for your story, b/c I wont take that chance anymore. I will keep them in my site at all times.

      (((hugs))) to you!

    • profile image

      Susan 7 years ago

      I was saddened and praying for the owner as I read this, but when I read the part about the dog fights, I began crying. Anyone who will take pleasure from the suffering of an innocent animal is capable of anything, and I don't say that lightly. Please contact Oprah. She is one of dog's best friends. NC's laws and lack of laws need to be exposed. Maybe Oprah can help your dogs to be rescued and effect a change in NC.