For some it may seem like a bizarre story but for Kelsi Padula, it’s her worst nightmare.
“If I think about it too long, it kills me inside,” Padula said.
“If this is all just a sick joke, a sick prank, I just need an answer.”
Padula’s beloved dog, Lager, disappeared three weeks ago from an acreage in Maple Ridge. Padula turned to social media, posting to Facebook, Kijiji and Craigslist with the hopes that someone may have spotted the seven-year-old mastiff mix.
And someone did, or so Padula thought. A person called with a tip on the whereabouts of Lager but then that’s when things got odd and soon the information started to feel more like torture.
She was told via text by the tipster, “I can’t give you an address, just thought you would like to know…” And then she was sent a picture of a similar looking dog, saying it was being kept at a local drug house.
Another text told Padula that “others have said they are mean to him, they said they’ve kicked him, use him as a guard dog… all not treating it nice.”
It soon became a game of cat and mouse over the whereabouts of their dog.
Padula says both the RCMP and SPCA were notified. Global News could not reach either for comment but did speak to the ‘tipster’.
GN: “You said you knew where the dog was located, right?”
Tipster: “Yeah but it doesn’t really have anything to do with me. I just looked at something on Craigslist and then I just forwarded a picture and then I was just kinda being nosey.”
For Padula, this type of ‘tip’ was not helpful.
“This is already my worst nightmare to not know where my boy is but to have people think that they can mess around with people’s emotions? It’s just really cruel.”
Experts say that fact a caller would go this far without providing an address raises doubts and ultimately turned a brief moment of hope for Lager’s owners into further heartbreak.
~ with files from John Hua