UPDATE 9/4/13 @ 6:27 p.m.
CABELL COUNTY, W.Va. (WSAZ) -- A broken vandalized fence and an empty cage where pit bull Brutus was being kept had folks at the Huntington-Cabell-Wayne Animal Shelter fearing for the worst. But their hope for the best paid off Wednesday morning.
"It was very surprising because I honestly didn't think we would see the dog again," Huntington-Cabell-Wayne Animal Shelter Director Jim Cumm explained shortly after the dog was returned Wednesday morning.
Harry Kingery had the dog. He said he bought it from a man after posting an ad on Craig's List that he was looking for one.
"The guy called me Monday and said he had a full-blood pit," Kingery explained.
Harry says they met at Virginia Point Park in Kenova, W.Va. They exchanged $250 and the dog.
All Kingery knows is that the man's name was Chris and that he drove a black car.
Kingery says he doesn't have a phone number either because the call came up as private.
Cumm is just happy to know the dog wasn't taken for breeding purposes or to be used as a fighting dog.
"We may never know who took the animal or for what reasons why," Cumm said. "We probably know now because he was sold."
Cumm says this is a case of buyer beware.
"A lot of stolen animals end up on Craig's List for sale," he said. "They usually sell pretty quickly, so they move fast and get them delivered quickly."
At some point during the weekend, a person broke in by cutting the chain-link fence, opened his kennel door and took the dog with them.
Jim Cumm, the director of the shelter, says nothing else was tampered with or stolen.
"It's definitely a dog that you would see in this field as a breed dog," Cumm explained.
He believes someone cased the area on Saturday and came back on Sunday with their sights set on Brutus.
"They could have claimed the dog. We would have let them have the dog back," Cumm said. "I just feel like they didn't want us to know who owned the animal."
A breeder in the state of West Virginia must be appropriately licensed; otherwise, they could face fines.
Cumm says they are considering putting pure-bred dogs in the indoor part of the shelter to prevent this from happening in the future.
Meanwhile, the shelter where Brutus was being kept, which was vandalized so the burglar could take the dog, is only six months old and was built entirely by donations.
If you have any tips that could help track Brutus down, you can give the shelter a call at (304) 696-5551.
+ Ashland, KY
+ Athens, OH
+ Beckley, WV
+ Charleston, WV
+ Clarksburg, WV
+ Clay, WV
+ Gallipolis, OH
+ Huntington, WV
+ Ironton, OH
+ Logan, WV
+ Morgantown, WV
+ Paintsville, KY
+ Parkersburg, WV
+ Pikeville, KY
+ Pomeroy, OH
+ Ripley, WV
+ Spencer, WV
+ Sutton, WV
+ Wayne, WV
+ Wheeling, WV
+ Williamson, WV