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Stolen Yorkie puppy returned, pet store owner says

Store owner estimates stolen Yorkie worth $1,800

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MANDARIN, Fla. – A Yorkshire terrier puppy stolen Monday from Pet World in Mandarin has been returned, according to the pet store owner.

The owner, Sharon Welsh, told News4Jax she had surveillance video of teens she believed had stolen one of her expensive Yorkie puppies by distracting store staff.

A girl in a tie-dyed shirt is seen in the surveillance video picking up a lab puppy and taking it to a play area while a girl in a purple hoodie makes plans to take the more expensive pup -- the Yorkie.

"She lifted the lid up and picked up the puppy (and) walked out of the store," Welsh said. "(The staff) helped them with the lab, but she helped herself with (the Yorkie)."

Welsh made a plea for the puppy, a Biewer Yorkie worth $1,800, to be returned because it's very young and on medication.

Welsh said after her story aired Monday night, several teenagers came to the store and called in to identify the suspected puppy thieves.

She said apparently one of the girls went to a neighbor's house around the corner and said, "Hey! I found this puppy!" left it at the neighbor's house and ran off. The neighbor knows Welsh well and returned the missing puppy to the store.

The Jacksonville Sheriff's Office said it has the names of the teens believed to be involved in the puppy theft, but no arrests have been made yet.