A Mesa dog breeder has been reunited with two pit bull puppies stolen from her last week in a PetSmart parking lot.
Beth Kaufman said Tuesday she “got really lucky” after an anonymous caller gave police a tip in the case. Officers tracked down the vehicle that Kaufman saw when the puppies were stolen and located some teenagers who had the dogs in Gilbert.
Puppies Aka and Ipo were brought home Monday night and were “fat and healthy,” Kaufman said.
“It was a great reward for all the hard work and all the fliers,” Kaufman said. “It was a miracle.”
Kaufman said she is pressing charges and will also pursue a civil lawsuit. Police said the case is still under investigation.
The dogs were stolen Sept. 6 when Kaufman met a potential buyer at the PetSmart parking lot near U.S. 60 and Stapley Drive.
The man ended up buying one pit bull, but while Kaufman closed the deal, two young males lingering near her vehicle grabbed two puppies and ran.
She said she chased the thieves and then filed a police report and posted fliers throughout the community.
Kaufman said she met the legitimate buyer in a public place because other dog breeders in the Valley have been attacked in their homes by people posing as buyers.
She said she is thankful to the anonymous tipster who saw the story of the missing pets in the news and called police.
“Now our famous pups need new homes,” she said.
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For information on adopting Aka or Ipo, visit