WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) -- A little pooch has created one big rift between two friends in New Hanover County. One man says his dog is with the wrong woman. It’s a fight over a two and a half pound Yorkshire Terrier.
Darlene McGuire says the dog was hers from the get go.
She says she gave the Yorkie to Bob Byrne, an elderly man she says she cared for, and his wife who loved the little pooch about 4 years ago.
“She kept wanting her and saying it was her dog, and I felt bad,” Darlene said. “I said I’m not going to breed her anymore, go ahead and take her.”
Things were going smoothly until Byrne decided to go on vacation to Florida. He says he asked McGuire to watch the dog for him.
But when he returned, Byrne says he was concerned for the dog’s safety because he found out a hawk was eyeing his backyard.
So, McGuire says she kept watching the dog for him for four months. She says at one point, Byrne told her just to keep the dog.
“He was happy for me to take Maleah back, until he got mad,” Darlene said.
The situation boiled over during an argument, and Byrne says he told McGuire he wanted his Maleah back. But McGuire said she wasn't going to return the dog.
"I said I'm not giving that, I'm not feeding that dog to a hawk,” McGuire said. “I'm sorry, I'll go to jail. I'm right in this.”
Just a month later, Byrne confronted McGuire at her house, with a deputy, to get his dog back.
Now, McGuire says the deputy handled the situation completely wrong.
Byrne says the Sheriff’s Deputy handled the situation properly, and he thinks this whole thing is ridiculous.
Maleah is currently staying with McGuire.
Byrne says he just wants to put this whole thing behind him. He says he has given up on trying to get his dog back.