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add 10dogs missing FOR WEB/MD/kh/

By Christina Killion Valdez

Post-Bulletin, Rochester MN

A Rochester family is in shock as they search for their two dogs, which they believe were stolen from their property early Tuesday morning.

At about 4 a.m., Nicole Sankey, 19, and her family heard a noise in the backyard. They didn’t think much of it at the time, figuring that their dogs — Chase and Shadow — were probably just chasing a rabbit, she said.

However, when her father went outside at 5:30 a.m. to feed the dogs before work, he found them missing, and the gate of their fence torn apart.

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"The gate is basically ripped in half," Sankey said. "It’s a chain-link fence, and the lock was kind of snapped."

Everything was fine when the family went to bed last night, she said.

The family reported the damage and the lost dogs to the police. They’ve also searched their southeast Rochester neighborhood, which is near Willow Creek Middle School, and posted signs. Now they are seeking the public’s help.

Both dogs are Irish setter, Labrador retriever mixes. Chase is red with white patches. Shadow is black.

The family has had the dogs for about five years and hasn’t had any problems, she said.

"The neighbors all know our dogs and feed them," Sankey said.

She hoped to find the dogs before her youngest sister came home for her last day of fifth grade on Tuesday. So far, though, there is still no sign of either dog.

It’s strange, she said, because when the dogs have gotten out on their own, they’ve always come right back.

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