Archived Story

Woman wants service dog returned

Published 11:17am Friday, May 16, 2014

A service dog who was trained to assist a woman with a brain injury was kidnapped, according to its owner, and she says he may be being used as a fight dog.

The owner of the dog, Heather Pirtle, was in an accident that left her with short-term memory loss since a car accident five years ago. She purchased the dog, a two year-old boxer-rottweiler mix named “Kilo,” to train him to assist her.
Photo provided
Heather Pirtle of Fergus Falls, alleges her service dog, Kilo, was sold against her will.

The dog is certified and registered as a service dog, according to Pirtle.

However, she had a couple cats and needed time to prepare her home for the dog’s arrival and asked a friend of a friend to babysit the dog for a couple of days, Pirtle said.

That was about three weeks ago.

When Pirtle’s personal care assistant, Kristin Nichols, went to visit the dog the next day, the dog was gone, Pirtle said.

Last week, Pirtle and Nichols learned the dog may have been sold on Craig’s list to someone in the Fargo area without her permission.

The two women have posted the dog’s photo and the circumstances of his disappearance on social media sites and have brought their story to the media.

According to police reports, filed with the Fergus Falls Police Department, the dog is considered property, and he since he wasn’t technically stolen, the issue is a civil case, not a criminal one.

The women are willing to pay a reward to get Kilo back, they said, because the dog is critical to helping Pirtle maintain her health — he helps remind her to take her medication and with her mobility, as well as being a support system for her.

Neither Pirtle or Nichols have been able to reach the person who allegedly sold the dog.

“We just want the dog back,” Nichols said.

Anyone with information on Kilo may email Nichols at


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