A 10-year-old girl who is offering everything in her piggy bank to get her 5-month-old puppy Meeko back may get her wish.
Burglars stole thousands of dollars worth of electronics from the Mabanags’ San Jose, Calif., home Monday, but all 10-year-old Marissa Mabanag wants back is her shih tzu-yorkie mix puppy, Meeko. The family received a call Thursday morning that someone may have spotted the pup.
“I’m begging from a mother’s heart to bring our puppy back to my daughter,” Marissa’s mother, Marie Mabanag told ABCNews.com. “That was a piece of her heart that is missing. It was an unnecessary pain to go through. We don’t care about anything else. It’s just the puppy for her.”
Mabanag said Marissa is devastated over not having her puppy. In the short time that they’ve had him, the fifth grader has taught him tricks and takes care of him almost completely on her own. Mabanag tries to keep her busy to take her mind off of it, but Marissa spends most of her days staring at pictures of Meeko and crying, her mother said.
“I really do hope that those people who did it do have a heart or know a little girl that they can understand this to,” Mabanag said. “When they stole the puppy I don’t think they knew what they were doing. They were taking someone’s heart.”
In June, Meeko was a surprise for Mabanag’s daughters on their last day of school. Marissa named her after the raccoon in the film “Pocahontas.” It took Mabanag’s daughters a long time to convince her to get a dog.
“I finally gave in to the girls and now he’s ripped from our lives,” Mabanag said.
The police and fire unions are throwing in a $5,000 reward for Meeko’s return and Councilman Ash Kalra kicked the reward up to $6,000.
Burglars also stole designer purses, game consoles and bicycles from the Mabanags’ home. They weren’t able to get jewelry because all of that was stolen from their home last year. Mabanag, who is a teacher, blames budget cuts and not enough cops for the burglaries.
City council members Ash Kalra and Nancy Pyle told ABC affiliate KGO that the mayor and council majority’s fiscal policies have gutted the police department and opened the door for burglaries to increase.
“Word is out on the street and they know it, that we don’t have enough officers to patrol our streets, we don’t even have a burglary unit, we don’t have detectives,” Kalra told KGO.
Police are investigating the Mabanags’ case and the family is keeping their faith in finding their playful pup.
“It’s not over yet,” Mabanag told ABCNews.com. ” I know it’s not over yet.”