New York

Devastation as Thieves Target Small Dog Breeds in New York

Across New York City, thieves have been snatching up a few particular dog breeds.

Brooklyn resident Ceritta Turner had her Yorkie, Señorita Wiggles, stolen earlier this week.

According to Turner, a man had called her dog over while she was working near Halsey and Lewis in Bedford-Stuyvesant, and when she looked up, she noticed that both had disappeared.

“I looked down the road and I didn’t see Wiggles, so I just took off and ran and ran, out of my shoes. I ran out of my hat,” she explained.

Police have since been reviewing surveillance footage of the man, who stealthily whisked Wiggles away.

“It was the worst thing that I ever could see. It hurt me so bad that Wiggles was taken,” Turner said, who regarded her Yorkie as both a family member and therapy dog.

Sean Casey of the Animal Rescue has been rescuing animals for almost 20 years, and says that most thieves are driven by cash.

“It’s New York City, small apartments. The most popular dogs are small breeds, and that’s what most people are looking for,” Casey explained.

According to a 2016 study by the American Kennel Club, Yorkies are the most popular dog breed to be stolen, followed by Chihuahuas, bulldogs, Pomeranians and Shih Tzus.

“A small breed Yorkie at a pet store can go upwards of $2,000, so when thieves see them, they think it’s an opportunity to make a buck,” Casey said.

As police continue to search for Turner's Yorkie, Casey advises all pet owners to microchip their animals as the best way to keep them safe.

Fortunately for Turner, Wiggles is microchipped.

Turner says that she’s not looking to prosecute the man who stole her dog. She just wants her Yorkie back, no questions asked.

“I have no family here in New York so (Wiggles) just gives me all the affection, and love, and kisses I need,” she said.

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