By Elizabeth Coss
Puppy Palooza, an event meant to create a sense of peace on campus through bonding with animals, turned into a search after a puppy was allegedly stolen Aug. 29.
Lego, the two-month old brown and white labrador mix, was presumed taken during the event hosted by New Lease on Life Rescue.
According to Maria Guyan, the founder of the shelter, they were notified around 6:45 p.m. that the dog had been safely turned in to the Youngstown State University Police Department.
“We’re very glad that he has been found,” Guyan said. “It was all thanks to the tips and information we had been provided with.”
Lego was brought in as a newborn with his mother and siblings from a high-kill shelter in West Virginia. Guyan said the incident was surprising to first hear about.
“We’re very shocked that this happened. We’ve been doing the Puppy Palooza event for years, and we’ve never had an issue,” Guyan said.
The shelter agreed to drop charges if the individual gave up the puppy willingly to either the animal rescue organization or police, despite a report having been filed. Guyan confirmed a volunteer would retrieve the puppy from the station.
Guyan also said she expects Puppy Yoga scheduled for Sept. 6 to go on as planned as the event is pre-contained, but some security changes may come to Puppy Palooza in the future.