Dog reunited with family after being stolen in Fairfield nearly 8 months ago
A dog that was stolen months ago in Fairfield is now back at home with her owners.
Valeria Karat says she never gave up on her Maltese, Cindy. She finally got to hold the dog in her arms for the first time since Feb. 2.
“My soul was taken away from me because my Cindy [was] only 4 months. I was destroyed and broken,” she says.
The dog was stolen after Karat had pulled into the rest stop on I-95 northbound in Fairfield. She was coming from her home in New York City and had Cindy in the car. Surveillance video shows her pumping gas when another car pulled up. A man from that car jumped into hers and took off.
Police recovered Karat's car in Bridgeport, but Cindy wasn't inside.
Since that night, Karat has made dozens of trips to Connecticut animal shelters, always getting her hopes up when she learned a small white dog had recently been taken in. On Thursday, almost eight months later, she made her final trip.
She headed to Waterbury Animal Control with Cindy's favorite toys. Karat says she got the call last week that Connecticut State Police had found Cindy in Waterbury in another stolen car.
"Neglect was definitely something that they noticed with her. She was very frail when they found her. They had to fatten her up a little bit. She was matted so they did give her a bath. They shaved her a little to get the mats out and she does have conjunctivitis in both eyes," says Trooper Donna Sabourin.
The shelter says other than that, Cindy is happy and healthy.
"I’m very grateful to you all. Know that each - each of you I have in my heart," Karat says.
Karat says Cindy recognized her immediately, though she seems to have forgotten her early training.
"This is magic, you know? This situation [is] really magical," she says.
Karat says she feels alive again now that she’s been reunited with Cindy, who will be getting lots of love and attention.
While Cindy was gone, she turned 1 year old earlier this month.
State police say arrests for the people who took her are coming.