• Puppy belonging to terminally ill girl, 5, stolen from home

    By: Bob D'Angelo, Cox Media Group National Content Desk


    The family of a terminally ill 5-year-old girl is looking for the child’s 11-week-old puppy that was allegedly stolen from their North Carolina residence, The Burlington Times-News reported.

    Shala Browning said her family, including daughter Zakaia Gray, went out to celebrate Browning’s birthday Saturday night. When they returned, the puppy, an American Bully named Annabella May, was gone, the newspaper reported. 

    Zakaia has terminal brain cancer, and doctors believe she has between three to six months to live, the Times-News reported. The puppy was being trained as a service animal.

    “I usually take (Annabella May) everywhere with us,” Browning told the Times-News. “I am trying to get her kennel trained, so I was like ‘She will be OK for a couple of hours.’ We went out to Durham for my birthday dinner, and when we got back, she was gone.”

    Only the puppy was missing from the home, Browning said.

    “That is all they took,” Browning told the Times-News. “They didn’t take her food, her kennel, her dog bed. Nothing else that we noticed was stolen from the home.”


    Browning said Zakaia has been despondent since the puppy was taken.

    “This is her dog,” Browning told the Times-News. “She named her Annabella. We put May because May is Brain Cancer Awareness Month. We were so excited about her. It all was perfect, and it went together. We were going to get her papers. It is sad. That is all she really talks about, is her dog.”

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