New Castle News

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September 15, 2012

Owner pleads for return of stolen puppies

NEW CASTLE — Irene Matas has survived two wars, twice beat breast cancer and is coming through non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma.

But her heart is breaking over the loss of two puppies.

Between 12 and 6:30 a.m. Wednesday, someone entered the West State Street home the 75-year-old retired Air Force nurse shares with her brother, Richard.

The thief took a 42-inch flat screen television, a digital camera, two purses and two 11-week-old Boston terriers. This happened while the Matas’ slept in bedrooms at the far end of the house.

Matas noted that on the same night, two other houses on State Street were broken into and the Red Apple, also on State Street, was robbed.

She said she has not stopped crying since.

“The puppies were taken from the baby’s playpen in the living room.” Matas believes one purse, a large “pouchy” but empty bag, might have been used to haul them away.

She had the animals for only three weeks.

“My long-time pet, Patches, a fox terrier, had to be put down on July 16,” she said. “She was my long-time companion and got me through my illness.”

When Patches’ health had deteriorated beyond her nursing skills, Matas said, she agreed to have the dog put down.

“I told myself I’d never have another dog again. It was too hard on me if something happened to them. Then I found Adam and Eve.”

She visited a breeder in Butler County, considering one dog, then decided on a pair — so they would be company to each other and her.

“I’d decided on two females, but when I saw the puppies I was enchanted by the little runt of the litter.”

She said he weighs only two and a quarter pounds — half his sister’s size.

“I thought Eve would lord it over Adam, but he’s not only holding his own, he takes care of her.”

The puppies, who answer to “Peanuts” and “Sissy,” sport unusual markings, Matas said.

The male has a dark “dog biscuit” marking on his pink nose. The female, with a small black mark on her forehead, has four white paws — unusual for Boston Terriers who usually have two white front feet and black back feet.

Matas is hopeful someone will see the dogs’ markings, identify them as hers and return them.

“I’m offering a substantial reward — no questions asked — for their safe return.”

So far, Matas said, she’s received one call — from someone who has a dog he wants to get rid of.

The male dog has had diarrhea since she acquired him, she said, and both are being medicated for it.

Matas said posters of her pups have been placed at local businesses and by her vet, who has contacted all the veterinarians in western Pennsylvania. Matas said she has contacted vets in eastern Ohio, and her brother spent the day at the Rogers, Ohio, flea market.

Matas said he learned there is a small animal auction on Friday nights.

“I’m told that whoever broke into the house was probably looking for something they could sell fast for drug money,” she said. “These are purebred puppies, but whoever took them doesn’t have the paperwork. They won’t get any money for them.”

But she has not lost hope.

“I pray that the puppies are returned to me but if not, I pray that they are placed with responsible owners who will love them and take care of them.”

Anyone with information is asked to call (724) 658-8855 or (724) 714-8084.

(Email: nlowry@ncnewsonline.com)

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