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Discussion Starter #1
This one is quite long I apologise

Today one of the worst things that can happen to a dog owner happened.
My beautiful Ellie was taken from me by the Police. Before you think that this is a story about a person who neglects or even abuses her pet trying to defend herself, please read the whole post before you make up your mind.

Me and her have just moved to the city of Stockholm in Sweden so I could start my new job. I was a bit worried about leaving her at home for a few hours a day so I made the decision to get a nanny cam and of course never miss a lunch walk.
I had my schedule planned out: going out for a long walk and trip to the park in the morning, leave for work and return at lunch to walk her and take her to the park. Also repeating this in the evenings but for longer.
The first week went by fine and we didn't have any trouble at all. I had relatives staying with me during a few days who said that she didn't bark much when she was alone and mostly slept. This relieved me and every time I'd come home I could see that she was fine and quite calm.
Now today. I was sitting at work and I decided to check up on her through the camera that's connected through my phone. To my horror i saw policemen inside my apartment walking around going through my things. I panic and leave straight away.
When I get there I see that both my doors have been jammed open and completely ruined, with wood scattered on the floor.
I ask them what is going on. They tell me that there had been a complaint and just to make sure no one was dying in here they jammed the doors open and went in.
Now some extra information, I had unknowingly moved into a very posh side of town and even though she wasn't causing much trouble (the camera has sound too so I can hear if she barks) someone had called the police to complain.
Now they asked me if she was my dog and I replied with a yes. They ask me why she is at home. I told them that I worked but that I'm always home at lunchtime to walk her and that I have a camera with sound to monitor her and I pointed to it.
They told me they had called the animal rescue who had said that she could no longer stay with me. This is when I started to become hysterical. If they looked at her they could see that she is healthy and happy and even though this isn't the ideal situation it would only be temporary (been in line for doggy day care since me moved).
They said it didn't matter, that they were taking her and that they wouldn't tell me where. Only that I was a suspect of a crime and that I'll be contacted within the next two weeks! And they left.
After crying on the floor for about an hour I had to start calling people to see what was happening. Friends and relatives were helping me as well because they know that she is my life.
After a long day, my mum finally got in touch with the woman at animal rescue who had made the decision to take her in. They had a nice long conversation and tried to resolve what happened.
Turns out the police had lied a great deal when speaking to her and when writing the report.
They had written that she was malnourished and thirsty. I feed her every morning lunch and evening. Even freeze peanut butter so she has something to do. And when they left I poured out the water left in her water bowl in the sink as I was crying, so I know that she had plenty to drink when they came in.
They had also said that she hadn't been walked in ages and that she had soiled the place, which was also a lie. We were out that morning as always and she did her business just like usual.
There was also something about the window being opened so she could escape which is not true because it is always locked.
When the woman from animal rescue found out what the living situation actually is like for her (my mother explained) and that the police lied, she said she'd do anything she can for me to get her back and even gave us her private phone number. Now all I can do is wait.

I don't write this story so that you'll feel sorry for me. Many people will probably agree that I shouldn't have left her home alone while I work. However you must know that if I had any inkling that she was unhappy I would find another solution and not leave her. I genuinely thought I everything was working fine.

I write this because I want you to remember that not everyone is as keen on dogs and that if you live on the city your dog can actually be taken away in a heart beat. This is Sweden and everyone is quite strict here but not for a second did I think they would go as far as take her. All because of one phone call.

I just wish for no one to ever go through what I went through today. My Ellie is like a child to me and knowing she isn't with me right now breaks my heart. Haven't stopped crying all day and couldn't return to work.
I've had so much luck with having help with tons of people who know both me and Ellie well. But I know that not everyone is as lucky and may never see their pets again.
So please if you leave your pets at home and you aren't sure about your neighbours being okay with them be careful. I have no idea why the police would lie so much in their report and what it might bring them, but I know that it can happen now.
 

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Wow, that's terrible. I didn't know that about Sweden. I think you sound like a good owner and I'm glad the rescue women sounds nice. I hope you get your dog back soon!
 
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A vet check could disprove what the police said in a heartbeat...so make sure if you can, to have the rescue that has her do that...once done get copy of the report from the vet. Take lots of photos of your home, show that you had a nanny cam...and if possible, receipts showing what kind of dog food you buy and how often.

If you end up in court for this, go prepared...take witnesses...not just notes from them. Also if someone called you in....the first time might be just sheer meaness, but if it happens again, that could be considered harassment...not sure about Swedish laws but you might check into it. That way you might be able to find out who called and file against them for false accusations and harassing you by sending the police to your place more than once. Also, get an estimate on the damages and hand those over to the judge.

I don't know if the police department would have to pay for damages if they were wrong about someone being hurt and breaking in....but if the original call was about a dog being kept in bad conditions...that's not an immediate emergency and thus no reason to break down a door. Here in the states, I think the police department's insurance have to pay for damages when they end up doing stuff like that, that ends up that the person was innocent of a crime, or they had no real reason to break a door down...again...a call on a dog - how that equates to them thinking a person was in there hurt. A judge might look at that as an odd leap of reasoning.

Good luck in getting your dog back and I hope you can also prove that you have been looking into doggy day cares, so the judge can see you are indeed a responsible pet owner. And again... I don't know about Sweden but it's very common here for people to leave their pets alone for hours. I use to have a doggy door and would sometimes leave my dogs home alone over night if I had to take a trip. If it was longer than that, I would have a friend drive by and check on them to make sure they didn't trip their numerous water bowls over or some thing else came up. (I use to free feed my dogs...poured out the food and let them eat when they wanted).

Stormy
 
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What an awful situation!! I don't know what to say other than I really hope you get Ellie back soon :huddle: Please let us know what happens x
 

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Wow. That's extreme. I hope you get your dog back and hope you're looking for new living quarters.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Thank you everyone for your replies. Support is the best thing I can get at this stage.
A little update: I found that the policemen who were here had also told animal control that I had refused to show them any kind of medical records regarding Ellie. They never even asked me. I have her passport, vaccination certificate and pedigree papers in the drawer and I was cooperating the whole time. So if they would've bothered to even ask they would've gotten them with no hesitation.
I will be mentioning this in the formal complaint I'm placing against them.

The thing that stays with me the most out of all this, besides having to wake up without her next to my bed, is how invalidated I felt as a person as they were standing around during me and going through my belongings and personal life. It was like I no longer had any control or say in what my life was like, they had already made their minds up.
Ive never had trouble with the law before and to be standing in a shattered apartment and people in inform accusing me of animal abuse is something that will stay with me forever.
When you have individuals of such authority telling you you're a bad owner you can't help but start believing it.

We will be in touch with the lady from animal control today and we'll see what happens.

Thanks again for all your replies and support <3
 
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