Downtown dognapping has happy ending for owners

SEATTLE -- A dognapping in downtown Seattle took a strange turn thanks to an observant dog daycare worker...and a little luck.

Pumpkin is pumped to be back with her owners after quite the ordeal.

Gillian Williams was bringing items into an office on Dexter Ave. N. from her pickup and had left her pooch Pumpkin inside under the canopy.

But when she came out, "I noticed she wasn't in the (pickup,)" she said. The leash was gone too.

Williams drove around calling her dog's name. Soon a neighboring doggie daycare put her on the right scent.

"Somebody said, 'I did see something weird, I saw a guy walk by with no dog and then with a dog,'" Williams said.

The Barking Lounge manager, Maria French, studied the day care's surveillance video and spotted a man lingering alone outside the Seattle business.

Minutes later, "We see him walking down Dexter with Pumpkin," French said.

"It was really hard to see somebody just take her, and walk by on security camera like he owned her," Pumpkin's other owner Lindsay Martin said.

The dog's owners worried they'd never see Pumpkin again.

"Realizing that she's gone," Martin said. "It's like a hole in your life."

The owners called the police, but as it turned out the sleuthing would be done by a Barking Lounge employee.

Nanette Woods, a dog wrangler from the Barking Lounge was heading home near Westlake Ave. when she spotted the man she'd seen four hours earlier at work--with Pumpkin.

"I kind of went into a mini panic mode trying to figure out what to do," Woods said.

"She called me and was kind of in a hushed tone walking next to him and was like, 'I think I see your dog right now,'" Williams said.

Woods stalled the stranger, and asked him, "Can I pet your dog? What's her name."

Meanwhile, Williams raced to Westlake where she confronted the guy carrying a bag of dog supplies and walking her dog.

"Pumpkin ran towards me was really excited, he tried to pull her back really hard and then I grabbed the leash out of his hand and said actually that's my dog," Williams said.

While the owners say what happened is wrong and deserves repercussions, after seeing the surveillance, Williams said, "they seemed like like friends."

Anger turned to empathy.

"He just seemed like he wanted a dog just wanted a companion, she didn't look unhappy," Williams said.

She called police to let them know she found her dog, but it's still unknown who the man is and why he took Pumpkin.

Williams and Martin are just glad to have Pumpkin back where she belongs.