Volusia County deputies have found the dog reported stolen, but are still investigating the circumstances around her disappearance.
The two-year-old Golden Retriever, "Dumpling," vanished from the Spruce Creek fly-in community in Port Orange last Wednesday night and her owner believes whoever took her had access to the gated neighborhood.
A woman said she found Dumpling in an allet and thought she was a stray, so she took her to her home and cared for her for the past few days. According to deputies, after the woman saw the news accounts of the dog's disappearance, she dropped of the dog at the Flagler Humane Society.
The Humane Society called the owner and told him where he could pick up the dog.
"Dumpling was part of the family," said Wayne Dreier, who talks about his dog like any other dog-lover. "Dumpling had more friends in the community than I do. Everyone knew her, knows her."
But when Dumpling vanished, Dreier said he knew someone didn't think he should have her.
He walked into his open garage to bring her in for the night, but she was gone. Her bed was still intact, but he found her collar in the street the next day.
"That didn't spell good news right there because there's no way that collar would have gotten off of her without somebody taking it off her. It hasn't been a fun 5 or 6 days," said Dreier.
A report from the Volusia County Sheriff's Office said just two weeks before, someone sent Dreier an anonymous letter accusing him of abusing Dumpling and leaving her outside. Deputies interviewed neighbors, and said some don't like how he treats the dog.
Deputies said not one complaint was ever made to animal control about how Dreier cared for his dog.
"If someone had that kind of concern, why didn't they go to the Humane Society or go to one of these other organizations or go to the Sheriff's department and have them come and check us out instead of taking something from us, that is stealing," said Dreier.