An unexpected dog reunion after a vehicle theft: 'I never expected to see him again'

A viewer who was watching KIMT's Midday reported that she saw a Facebook post with the missing dog in it. That ultimately led to the owner and the dog being reunited, which KIMT was along for.

Posted: Sep 3, 2020 12:17 PM
Updated: Sep 4, 2020 7:29 AM

ROCHESTER, Minn. – Shortly after KIMT aired a story at Midday on Thursday about a $5,000 reward being offered for a dog that went missing after a car was stolen, we received some good news.

80-year-old Dean Webster of Missouri is in Rochester because his wife is receiving care at Mayo Clinic. Webster was on his way to visit his wife when he stopped at the Kwik Trip in Rochester on Commercial Drive around 2:27 P.M. on September 2nd. He had his wife's beloved dog, Ned the Weiner dog, in his vehicle. It was hot, so he left the car running while he went inside to buy a hot dog.

When Webster exited the gas station, his bronze 2004 BMW sedan and black dachshund were gone.

Just before 10 P.M. Tuesday, the vehicle was found undamaged, but out of gas, in Eden Prairie. The dog was not in the vehicle.

Karla Whipple, of Elkton, found the dog at the Lake Geo Travel Plaza in Dexter Tuesday evening. The dog is scared of strangers, and she was not able to lure him to safety. She called law enforcement and an animal shelter. She enlisted the help of a friend, Brandon Kobow, who checked on the dog in the morning, fed it treats and posted its photo to Facebook. At the time, they thought maybe someone had dumped their own dog. Neither the rescuers nor the owner expected a happy ending to this story.

As Webster arrived at the KIMT News 3 Rochester studio to do an interview about his missing dog, a viewer who was watching KIMT's Midday reported that she saw a Facebook post with the missing dog in it. Kobow also began receiving messages from people who saw this dog in his post and the dog on TV and put two and two together. Shortly after, Webster received a phone call from the Rochester Police Department with Kobow's contact information.

KIMT News 3 was there as Webster and Ned were reunited in Dexter.

"I never expected to see him again," Webster says. His wife has an even closer bond with the dog. Webster says she was "ecstatic, to say the least," to hear of the dog's safe return.

Whipple and Kobow didn't know it at the time of the rescue, but Webster was offering $5,000 for the safe return of his dog. Webster said he did this because he knew it would get people's attention. Whipple and Kobow will split the money.

"It's a nice gesture, but giving the dog back's a better one and getting him back to where he's supposed to be," says Kobow.

Webster's wife is being released from Mayo Tuesday afternoon. Webster will pick up his stolen vehicle tomorrow, then he, his wife, Ned, and their other dog will travel home to Missouri.

Minnesota Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 585677

Reported Deaths: 7309
CountyCasesDeaths
Hennepin1214151720
Ramsey50647870
Dakota45309445
Anoka41050434
Washington26510280
Stearns22001221
St. Louis17598302
Scott17081124
Wright15800137
Olmsted1314197
Sherburne1149085
Carver1037345
Clay809992
Rice7978106
Blue Earth742641
Crow Wing655888
Kandiyohi649182
Chisago585851
Otter Tail570178
Benton562397
Goodhue473572
Mower462532
Douglas461874
Winona451250
Itasca424353
McLeod419158
Morrison415460
Isanti412563
Nobles407048
Beltrami389458
Steele382715
Polk381068
Becker376950
Lyon358750
Carlton341453
Freeborn340229
Pine325121
Nicollet321743
Brown303840
Mille Lacs298952
Le Sueur287022
Todd279132
Cass266928
Meeker252040
Waseca236022
Martin229131
Roseau206719
Wabasha20423
Hubbard185341
Dodge18253
Renville178443
Redwood171736
Houston170515
Cottonwood163221
Fillmore154710
Wadena153821
Pennington153419
Chippewa151538
Faribault150419
Kanabec142924
Sibley142010
Aitkin133436
Watonwan13139
Rock127719
Jackson121511
Pipestone114526
Yellow Medicine113820
Pope10876
Murray10609
Swift104518
Stevens89511
Marshall87617
Clearwater85916
Koochiching81615
Lake80619
Wilkin80312
Lac qui Parle75022
Big Stone5954
Lincoln5763
Grant5668
Mahnomen5418
Norman5379
Unassigned48993
Kittson48322
Red Lake3957
Traverse3685
Lake of the Woods3193
Cook1560

Iowa Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 365306

Reported Deaths: 5923
CountyCasesDeaths
Polk57333622
Linn20748334
Scott19856240
Black Hawk15765308
Woodbury15097228
Johnson1442583
Dubuque13333209
Dallas1112998
Pottawattamie11060168
Story1056248
Warren574288
Clinton552492
Cerro Gordo536989
Sioux512974
Webster511193
Marshall481375
Muscatine475399
Des Moines452366
Wapello4286122
Buena Vista424040
Jasper417271
Plymouth400380
Lee373855
Marion360775
Jones297257
Henry290837
Carroll285052
Bremer283260
Crawford265940
Boone263234
Benton255455
Washington253550
Dickinson247643
Mahaska229451
Jackson220942
Kossuth215164
Clay214925
Tama209071
Delaware208240
Winneshiek196833
Page192522
Buchanan190531
Cedar188923
Hardin184843
Fayette184741
Wright183936
Hamilton179249
Harrison179173
Clayton169256
Butler164334
Mills161422
Madison160819
Floyd160042
Cherokee158438
Lyon157541
Poweshiek154733
Allamakee150551
Iowa148224
Hancock146934
Winnebago141231
Cass137854
Calhoun136913
Grundy136133
Emmet133940
Jefferson132235
Shelby130537
Sac130019
Appanoose128048
Union128033
Louisa127849
Mitchell125742
Chickasaw123815
Guthrie120829
Humboldt118826
Franklin117721
Palo Alto112323
Howard104222
Montgomery102838
Clarke99824
Unassigned9760
Keokuk95531
Monroe95129
Ida90234
Adair86232
Pocahontas85222
Monona82830
Davis82324
Osceola77916
Greene77610
Lucas77123
Worth7388
Taylor65712
Fremont6229
Decatur6069
Van Buren55718
Ringgold55524
Wayne53423
Audubon50710
Adams3384
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