Theo, the beloved Brussels griffon belonging to Trendee King and James Galley, went missing last month. Since then, the heartbroken couple has put up posters, tarps and flyers all over California’s Bay Area, they’ve hired a pet detective, run newspaper ads and have actually postponed their upcoming wedding in the hopes of finding the scruffy-lovable little guy.
Back on Feb. 13, Theo bolted out the door of his dog sitter’s home. King was with friends back in Los Angeles at the time, shopping for a wedding dress with friends when her heartbroken and panicked fiance called to break the news.
“My heart sank and I was terrified,” King told The Mercury News. She booked a flight back to San Jose where the couple began searching high and low for Theo.
“We searched from probably 8 p.m. to midnight, all the way down to the Oakridge Mall,” she said. “We were calling him, shaking treats … but no Theo anywhere.”
They have resumed their search every day since.
“We’ve been to Milpitas, Palo Alto, Santa Cruz, Saratoga, Campbell,” King said. “We’ve been everywhere. We’ve been to every shelter, every vet, every Petsmart.”
King has told reporters that Theo is like a child to her.
“There’s just no way I’m going to plan a wedding right now,” King said. “It’s impossible, it’s a full-time job (searching for Theo). We go for 12 hours, 14 hours some days.”
So far King and Galley have posted about 800 laminated posters from San Jose to Santa Cruz with Theo’s picture and a reward offer of $3,500, no questions asked, for his safe return.
“The signs are on every major cross intersection in the city,” King said. “We’re working on more. I just put in an order for another 100 signs.”
Theo is all over social media, as well.
Numerous citizens have contacted King claiming to have seen Theo, but all those tips led nowhere.
“I get hundreds of calls a day that ‘maybe this is your dog or maybe this is a sighting,’ so I have to go to make sure it’s not him,” she added. “My phone rings off the hook all day long and it’s all false leads…it’s a lot of stress and crying.”
One problem is that folks don’t recognize the Brussels griffon breed. She has been called out many times for what turned out to be a Yorkie. The black-and-tan coloring is very similar, but the faces are quite different.
“He looks just like an Ewok,” she said, referring to the hairy creatures from the “Star Wars” franchise. “Ten times a day, (people) say, ‘Awww, what a cute little Ewok’.”
Theo also has a snaggle tooth and several features that are different from Yorkshire terriers such as “a very flat face” and “really long legs.” He is not neutered, weighs about 12 pounds and was wearing a blue and red collar and a red harness when he ran away. King is doubly worried since Theo also needs antibiotics for an abscess that was being treated when he ran away.
“I won’t give up until he’s home,” she said. “Most of the time they’re close to where they were lost. I just think it’s persistence and getting as many eyes on it as possible. We have faith.”
Some people have mocked or criticized the couple’s efforts to find Theo, but King isn’t bothered.
“People without dogs don’t get it, but people with dogs understand,” she said. “You’d go to the ends of the Earth. There’s nothing that you wouldn’t do because they’re family.”
Anyone with information about Theo’s whereabouts is asked to call 310-663-2652. A $3,500 reward, no questions asked, is being offered to whoever finds him.