Rachelle Zacharias and Braden Fauchoux, his owners, told Global News the house is lonely without him. He’s been missing more than a week.
Late Saturday they received a call that someone had found him. The stranger offered to meet them and return Chiko.
The stranger never showed up to the meeting place.
When Zacharias and Fauchoux returned home, they learned they had been robbed.
“The doors were all broken into and everything was just, just ransacked,” Fauchoux said.
“When we walked in the door, I just looked to the right and I saw our bedroom and I saw the mattress had been flipped upside down,” Zacharias added.
Money, cameras and jewelry are all missing. But only Chiko matters, his owners say.
“I don’t care about anything else I think. I just want our dog back,” Zacharias said.
“That’s the most important thing,” Fauchoux agreed.
Chiko went missing on March 17. Zacharias let him outside but he never returned.
“We followed his paw prints down to the driveway,” she said.
“And there was a set of… vehicle tracks that had pulled over. And that’s where Chiko’s paw prints ended.”
They began putting up posters and posting things on Facebook.
No one called, until Saturday night around 9:45 p.m.
Zacharias told Global News the man said he and his fiancée saw one of the posts and they believed the dog they had just bought was Chiko.
They live east of Saskatoon and the stranger wanted to meet in the parking lot of a Boston Pizza in Martensville, north of the city, at 11 p.m.
“It was kind of one of the red flags that we didn’t really think about,” Zacharias said.
“They lured us out,” Fauchoux added.
“And we went out there, hoping. We didn’t even think… that anyone could do something like that to someone.”
The stranger kept saying he was running late, though he texted a photo of Chiko.
The collar was different, but it was definitely him, Zacharias said.
He never arrived. After an hour they returned home.
The robber or robbers went though the entire house. Some damage remained, even several days later when Global News visited. Closet doors were smashed in, guest rooms were still completely upturned and the roof of a hallway had been ripped open.
Fauchoux told Global News he suspected the robbers thought he and Zacharias may have been hiding cash there.
When they thought they were getting Chiko back they were ecstatic, Zacharias said. When they realized they weren’t, they were disappointed. And when they got home, she said, they were devastated.
Sgt. Jacqueline Spence, one of the RCMP officers investigating, believes whomever who took the dog is connected with whomever robbed the house, though she said she can’t be sure it’s the same person.
She told Global News the phone the person used to contact Zacharias and Fauchoux while they were waiting couldn’t be traced.
She also said they may have sold the dog.
“If somebody has bought him or purchased him off of Craigslist or some other kind of social media platform… you’re not to blame for this. You did not know.”
She also said this is the first time in her 15-year career she had seen something like this.
RCMP are continuing to investigate.
Zacharias and Fauchoux are holding out hope.