Family reunited with their dog that they say was stolen

A family is whole again after finding out their missing English bulldog has been found and will be returned to them, ...

Posted: Mar 27, 2018 7:35 PM
Updated: Mar 27, 2018 7:35 PM

A family is whole again after finding out their missing English bulldog has been found and will be returned to them, thanks to a story News 3 aired.

"We're so grateful for your station," said Lauren Church to News 3's Kim Cung.

Lauren and Will Church said their four-month-old puppy, Meaty, was stolen from their home. The family believes Meaty was last seen on surveillance video with the alleged thief at a Dollar General in the area.

After a News 3 story aired with the surveillance video showing the woman and Meaty, Lauren got a call. A News 3 viewer saw the story and is friends with a family who had Meaty.

"I got the call around 11 and he said, 'Hey, I think I have your dog here. I bought him from a woman and he looks just like the dog in the story,'" said Church.

She couldn't believe it and set up a time to meet with the family to reunite with Meaty Monday. Meaty has a heart condition that requires medication, so Church's first concern is making sure he is okay and healthy.

"We're really really grateful that we get a happy ending. So grateful for you guys for getting the story out and Dollar General providing the footage that they did," said Church.

For the past few days, Meaty had been with a family who didn't know he was stolen. Josiah, who is eight years old, had grown attached to Meaty and was sad to see him go. But Lauren and Will have a plan for him.

"Josiah gets to adopt a puppy from a local shelter. We're going to pay for the adoption fee," said Lauren.

Now that the Churches have their happy ending, they have a message for lost or stolen pet owners.

"Right away, file a report with your local animal control. The first 48 hours are really important, so put up flyers, canvas the area, talk to your neighbors. Don't give up hope. It seems awful and the world's going to end sometimes, but there are happy endings, you just have to keep on it," said Lauren.

The Churches also credit the community with really coming together to spread the word about Meaty, noting a local business gave them free flyers to pass out and put up. Meaty is now back on his medication and doing well.

Norfolk Police are continuing to investigate how and who stole Meaty and hope to press charges.

Huntsville
Overcast
72° wxIcon
Hi: 75° Lo: 66°
Feels Like: 72°
Florence
Overcast
64° wxIcon
Hi: 73° Lo: 63°
Feels Like: 64°
Fayetteville
Overcast
72° wxIcon
Hi: 74° Lo: 63°
Feels Like: 72°
Decatur
Overcast
71° wxIcon
Hi: 76° Lo: 65°
Feels Like: 71°
Scottsboro
Overcast
70° wxIcon
Hi: 76° Lo: 66°
Feels Like: 70°
WAAY Radar
WAAY WAAY-TV Cam
WAAY Temperatures

Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Confirmed Cases: 159439

Reported Deaths: 2699
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Jefferson23443377
Mobile16934315
Tuscaloosa10414140
Montgomery10298197
Madison939496
Shelby743663
Baldwin669469
Lee655065
Calhoun462161
Marshall441150
Etowah431251
Morgan418235
Houston418034
DeKalb346129
Elmore322753
St. Clair299942
Limestone289330
Walker282392
Talladega267435
Cullman250824
Lauderdale231342
Jackson217515
Autauga207431
Franklin206131
Colbert204132
Russell19533
Blount194225
Chilton189332
Dallas187227
Coffee179511
Dale177251
Covington175529
Escambia173030
Clarke135317
Chambers135244
Pike134413
Tallapoosa133087
Marion109729
Barbour10339
Marengo102522
Butler101340
Winston93713
Geneva9167
Lawrence86132
Pickens86018
Bibb84314
Randolph82916
Hale77730
Clay74912
Washington74912
Cherokee74514
Henry7196
Lowndes71428
Bullock64917
Monroe64810
Crenshaw60930
Perry5936
Fayette58413
Cleburne5738
Wilcox57012
Conecuh56113
Macon53720
Lamar5065
Sumter47321
Choctaw39212
Greene34616
Coosa2053
Out of AL00
Unassigned00

Tennessee Coronavirus Cases

Confirmed Cases: 249866

Reported Deaths: 3163
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Shelby36685565
Davidson31975343
Knox1284891
Rutherford12017115
Hamilton11867109
Williamson718756
Sumner6184112
Wilson473159
Putnam445657
Montgomery424057
Out of TN415136
Sullivan381946
Madison381479
Bradley361923
Washington356951
Maury338938
Blount337436
Sevier336423
Robertson262842
Hamblen247548
Tipton238123
Unassigned22615
Dyer224732
Gibson217244
Coffee192325
Hardeman190533
Greene181252
Obion179522
Trousdale17768
Bedford174520
Dickson170719
Fayette169825
Anderson169713
McMinn165937
Lawrence164520
Loudon164311
Cumberland161327
Wayne16047
Carter158334
Weakley157326
Jefferson156421
Monroe147228
Warren144910
Lauderdale144117
Henderson142126
Hardin140420
Macon134825
Roane13217
Franklin130220
Haywood129728
Overton122917
Hawkins122625
White119414
Johnson11577
Marshall115710
Carroll115326
McNairy113427
Rhea112418
Cocke108014
Cheatham106911
Campbell103512
Bledsoe10264
Smith99413
Lake9873
Giles98336
Fentress91811
Lincoln9173
Crockett87020
Hickman81015
Henry80211
Marion7839
DeKalb73717
Chester73314
Decatur66311
Grainger6124
Grundy57511
Union5463
Claiborne5286
Polk51713
Humphreys4584
Jackson4535
Morgan4437
Unicoi4333
Houston42317
Benton4219
Cannon4212
Lewis4185
Clay40615
Scott3865
Sequatchie3472
Stewart33611
Meigs3296
Perry3082
Pickett2748
Moore2722
Van Buren2081
Hancock1213

Community Events