Reward offered after puppy stolen during Lafayette adoption event

LAFAYETTE, Calif. (KGO) -- A puppy was stolen from an adoption event at the Lafayette Pet Food Express over the weekend.

San Pablo-based shelter Jelly's Place ran the event and raised $500 for the safe return of Iris, the 4 to 5-month-old female chihuahua mix that was stolen.

Michael Levy, the founder and president of Pet Food Express, added $2,500, bringing the total to $3,000.

Surveillance video shows the suspect, believed to be a woman in her 20s with a tattoo on her right hand and a nose ring.

The suspect browses the store for a few minutes with Iris in her arms, before exiting through the back door.

Staff with Jelly's Place said it was busy and the store was crowded. They were in the middle of an adoption when they think the suspect reached into the pen and snatched Iris. They say it's the first time something like this has happened.

"It happened so fast," said Julie Bainbridge, a staffer with Jelly's Place on the day Iris was taken. "It's easy for that to happen when there's that many people around."

"The animals are often sick, and these shelters get them back to where they need to be and find a right home for them," said Levy. "Someone that would take a puppy, I can't imagine would be the right home. So we really want to see Iris brought back."

The reward is being offered for the safe return of Iris, no questions asked. People with information on the puppy's whereabouts are asked to contact Jelly's Place.
Copyright © 2019 KGO-TV. All Rights Reserved.