FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. - A Broward County woman whose SUV and dog were stolen when she made a quick stop at a store has been reunited with her 1-year-old Shih Tzu.
Jennifer Acquesta was up for more than 24 hours, posting fliers near the 7-Eleven where she last saw her dog, named Rocco, and her car.
"If you see this little dog, please help me," said Jennifer Acquesta said to a man near the gas station. "If you hear of anything, if you know anything, pass the word on the street."
Friends helped her to hand out the more than 200 fliers and post them in the neighborhood.
She said she was not going to let the lack of sleep, hunger or even rainfall stop her from finding the one thing she loves the most.
"I just want to find him -- please," Acquesta said while sobbing into a friend's shoulder.
At about 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Acquesta said she stopped at the 7-11 off Northeast Fourth Avenue and 16th Street.
It was supposed to be a quick errand. She just wanted something to drink
"When I came out, the truck was gone and so was my dog. I don't know if he's out in the rain. I don't know if he's in someone's yard. I don't know if he's hungry or cold, with some kids who are abusing him. I have no idea," she said.
To keep those thoughts at bay, she walked the streets talking to anyone who will listen.
"I don't care about my car, I just want my dog back," said a tearful Acquesta. "Just please help me."
Acquesta received good news Monday, when someone spotted the dog in front of another convenience store near U.S. 441 and 33rd Street, about six miles from where he was snatched. The woman retrieved the dog and called a local TV station that had aired the story. Acquesta said she was contacted.
"I was just holding his little T-shirt and I was praying so hard, 'God please, God please, let it be him,'" Acquesta said.
The dog was Rocco, and he and Acquesta were reunited Monday afternoon.
"I'm happy," Acquesta said. "I can relax. I can sleep. I can eat. Here he is."
Acquesta said the headline for this story is, "Don't leave your keys in your car, running. I've learned my lesson."
Acquesta said Rocco was a Christmas present from her dad last year.
Copyright 2011 by Post Newsweek. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.