Puppy dies after man steals it from Pembroke Pines store

PEMBROKE PINES, Fla. – An 8-week-old puppy named Toby that was stolen Monday morning from a pet store in Pembroke Pines has died, the veterinarian’s office where he was taken confirmed on Wednesday.

“He was in a cardboard box in his own urine,” Petland Manager Stephani Victor told Local 10 News. “He did not look good. He was unresponsive, he wasn’t moving, he looked very skinny, he looked hypoglycemic, his gums were white.”

Vahid Anthony McLaughlin, 47, was arrested Tuesday on a grand theft charge after he showed up at a nearby Einstein Bros. Bagels with the puppy and told police he was there to return it.

Victor told Local 10 News that McLaughlin asked to see the pompapoo, which is a cross between a Pomeranian and a toy poodle.

Man arrested after stealing pricy puppy from Pembroke Pines pet store

The manager said the man began acting erratically with Toby before pushing an employee and walking out of the store with the dog.

“He said he wanted to take the puppy to the vet,” Victor said. “He left his ID here and his bicycle, and he left his social security and his address with us so obviously he wasn’t completely there.”

With that information, Pembroke Pines police were able to track down McLaughlin and arrest him.

If Toby had survived, Petland was planning on donating him to a family in need.

According to the veterinarian who treated Toby, the puppy died of hypoglycemia due to malnourishment.

About the Authors:

Ian Margol joined the Local 10 News team in July 2016 as a general assignment reporter. Born in Miami Beach and raised in Broward County, Ian is thrilled to be back home in South Florida.

Amanda Batchelor is the Digital Executive Producer for Local10.com.