July 30, 2011
STOUGHTON, Mass. -- Filthy, thirsty and totally exhausted, Happy the Havenese was resting comfortably at home on Friday night after being lost for more than 40 hours, our news partner WickedLocal/Stoughton reported.
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“It’s great, great,” said Happy’s owner, Jim Bannister. “There’s just no feeling.”
Two boys out playing at 3 p.m. Friday found Happy under a bush, Bannister said. They chased him into the yard of a neighbor, who recognized Happy as the dog missing from Stoughton Groomers since Wednesday.
“She called my daughter in Maine, and my daughter called my wife, and my wife shot right over there,” said Bannister.
Happy, a 3-year-old black-and-white Havanese, disappeared at 9 p.m. Wednesday after, police say, a woman broke a lock on the play yard of the Park Street dog-grooming business where Happy was being boarded while his family vacationed in Maine.
The woman, who police said was drunk, walked off with a white Shih Tzu in her arms. Meanwhile, eight other dogs ran into traffic on Route 27, and one, a terrier mix named Snoopy, was struck by a car and fatally injured.
Police rounded up most of the animals, but Happy remained elusive. Bannister and his wife Vivian returned home from Maine to search for him and posted 125 fliers with his photograph around town.
The woman who allegedly broke into the business, Pamela Dowd, 44, of 1247 Park St., Stoughton, was ordered in court Thursday to undergo treatment for alcohol addiction. She was arraigned on seven charges, including breaking and entering, larceny and animal cruelty.
Five of the dogs belonged to Scott Holyoke, 32, the owner of Stoughton Groomers at 883 Park St., the former site of Missy’s Puppy Land.
Holyoke, who opened the business in March 2010, spent four years in prison on federal drug-dealing charges and will finish his federal probation next month. He was a government informant in the trial of Lawrence P. Novak, a Brockton lawyer convicted of money laundering and obstruction of justice.
“My life is not the same as it was,” Holyoke said Thursday. “I’m not a different person, I just don’t do the same things. Obviously, I know how to manage my previous demons.”
Police Executive Officer Robert Devine said police have no reason to believe the break into Holyoke’s business had anything to do with his past. It appears to be a random act, Devine said.
“We had problems with the previous owner,” Devine said, referring to Missy’s Puppy Land, whose owner was charged with animal cruelty. “He hasn’t been there very long. We really haven’t had too many dealings with him.”
Meanwhile, Bannister said Happy was “all wiped out” and in his own room resting after the ordeal.
The veterinarian said to give Happy water and a little food and time to recover from the stress, Bannister said.
Vivian Bannister said the family will find a way to reward the boys who brought Happy home.
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