Robbers broke into a Los Angeles area pet shop this week and stole a dozen French bulldogs valued at more than $100,000.
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Security cameras at Top Dog Pet Store in Gardena, California, captured the break-in early Tuesday showing four masked men as they break through a metal gate and remove cages with the dogs inside. Other dogs and puppies were carried out and thrown into a large white Chevy van after 4 a.m. ET/1 a.m. PT.
“They literally grabbed them and tossed them in the van like they were stuffed animals,” the shop’s owner Andres Avalos told KTLA, a TV station in Los Angeles. “It’s horrible.”
The shop’s cash register was broken into and about $2,000 in cash was taken, he said. But the dogs are more important – and more valuable, Avalos said. One of the dogs stolen is a 10-month-old show dog named “Roll X,” he said.
“It’s a big financial loss,” he told KTLA. “The dogs were (worth) over $100,000. We use those dogs for breeding purposes and that’s how we make a living. With the dogs being gone, it’ll be tougher to get by now.”
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French bulldogs are a popular pet and cost, on average, between $1,500 to $3,000, according to MarketWatch. But a French bulldog can go higher, into five figures.
That’s led to a reported increase in thefts of French bulldogs, with the most famous example the 2021 shooting of Lady Gaga’s dog walker and theft of a pair of her French bulldogs.
The Gardena (Calif.) Police Department is investigating the case, according to KTLA.
The pet store, opened six months ago, is licensed to breed French bulldogs, Avalos told the Los Angeles Times. He and the other store owner typically bring the dogs home each night, but on Monday they left the dogs in the store, Avalos said.
“It was just one of them nights,” he said. “We were tired and we had a lot going on that day. We were like, ‘We’ll take them home tomorrow.’ That tomorrow never came.”
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