A French bulldog has been stolen from a Bay Shore home, just hours after another Frenchie taken from her Huntington home was reunited with her owners.
Zushi, a 3-month-old male French bulldog, was stolen during a burglary in a home on Farrington Avenue in Bay Shore between 8 p.m. Saturday and 7 a.m. Sunday, Suffolk police said Sunday.
No one was home when her apartment was broken into, said the pet's owner, Catherine Vasquez, 29, who rents the ground floor of the house.
A relative who lives on the second floor was sleeping and didn’t hear anything, she said in an interview Sunday.
Vasquez said she was out at her nephew’s birthday party and returned late Saturday night to find her place ransacked and her puppy missing.
"It was horrendous," the mother of two said. "I had a mountain of clothing from my bed to the drawers [and] dressers. Everything, paperwork, social security cards flown everywhere. It was just a complete mess."
Other than the dog, Vasquez said her family lost $4,000 cash and designer clothes that she sells for her online boutique. Also taken, she said, was her sense of security in her home.
"Imagine a little 4-year-old coming up to you and say: ‘Mommy, what happened? What happened to our home? Where is Zushi?" said Vasquez, who recalled calling her boyfriend with her hands shaking and her two young children behind her. "I don't feel comfortable being here with my two children anymore."
The latest burglary on the South Shore came after the Thanksgiving Day break-in in Huntington where a 4-year-old purebred named Stella was stolen. Stella was found two days later by a woman walking her sister’s dog in Center Moriches.
The intruder entered the Bay Shore home through a locked back door, police said.
Police have made no arrests in the Huntington burglary. A Suffolk police spokeswoman on Sunday said detectives are investigating whether the two thefts are connected.
About 2 million dogs are stolen every year, according to the American Kennel Club, and the thefts often involve "high-value dogs, for example Bulldogs and French Bulldogs, and smaller breeds such as Chihuahuas and Yorkshire Terriers."
Vasquez, whose first dog, Rambo, died last December, said she spent nearly $6,000 on Zushi and brought him home about a month ago. Zushi, whom Vasquez described as playful and sweet, is microchipped.
"I honestly don't care about the belongings. … I just want our dog back home," she said. "With the holidays right around the corner, I just want our family to be complete again, you know?"
Detectives are asking anyone with information to call the Third Squad at 631-854-8352 or anonymously to Crime Stoppers at 1-800-220-TIPS. All calls will be kept confidential.
With Matthew Chayes