Custody battle over a two and a half pound yorkie

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Submitted: Wed, 08/07/2013 - 10:10pm
Updated: Thu, 08/08/2013 - 12:06pm

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.


  • Deemcguire says:

    I am Ms. McGuire and this reader needs to know that I did not send the deputy to my house! Mr. Byrnes had a sissy fit and demanded Maleah back after he gave her back to me. I never relinquished my ownership of the dog to mr. Byrnes, as the ownership paper clearly names me as owner. I had Maleah back for over 4 months after he told me to keep her. You don’t give someone anything and then go on a mad rampage demanding it back. He was the one to involved the sheriff’s department, not I. Mr Byrnes and the deputy Paul McMahon should have known it was a civil case. Even after the deputy demanded I turn over the dog ( which under mr. Byrnes lack of care would have become food for that hawk), I advised deputy McMahon that this was a civil case and to tell Mr. Byrnes to go through the courts. I only called the sheriff’s department after the deputy tried to break in my door, not once but twice the last time using a knife! While all this was going on ( for approximately 2 hours). Mr Byrnes block my driveway and would not let me out. Even after detective Lewis who was on the phone with me was saying it is a civil matter and not to let the deputy in, deputy McMahon pushed his way into my house and physically assaulted me. One final not, deputy McMahon had not police paper work. When I asked for some, he said he saw vet bills mr Byrnes produced. None of those vet bills were within the four months that I stated I had Maleah. So your post was based on the fact that wway did not air the whole interview I had with them. Nor did they show you the damage done to my door or the injuiries I sustained at the Hans of deputy McMahon. D. Mcguire

  • beach guy says:

    How is this news other than to point out the idiocy that is rampant in society today?
    I think they both should be billed for the expense of sending a deputy to the residence over a dog!

  • Guest111 says:

    My female dog has been spayed but even tho she CAN’T breed I never did breed her. So, I’m not going to breed her but I tell you this, I would not give her away to anyone. She is my dog, has been for 12 years and I can’t imagine telling anyone to just take her.

    The reason people don’t post their names is because of people like you who go off half cocked and threaten to sue for defamation of character, etc. People like you are the ones who post their names because it’s probably your way of life to fight, threaten, blow up and in general create drama for everyone and be a bully. The purpose of this web site is for people to comment, you know, like freedom of speech and that’s what we do. You take it to the next level when someone says something you don’t like and want to fight. Just hush.

  • Deemcguire says:

    The idiot who said I am a puppy mill needs to give their name so I can press charges for deformation of character. I bred Maleah years ago and only two times so my grown children could have a puppy from her. Then she was fixed! I recently let my large female yorkie have a litter as my male is near the end of his life span. He was my late husband’s baby boy, so I wanted a puppy from him. Just a thoughtful way of honoring my late husband, who by the way was a Marine and lost his life due to service connected cancer. Tell the truth idiot or you may find yourself in court.

  • Guest111 says:

    She was using the dog as a puppy mill and when that ran out she didn’t want the dog. Sounds to me like neither of them are worthy of this pooch. People who over breed dogs for profit should be ashamed of themselves. Has she bred this poor dog again to pay for her food and board?

  • KingCharles says:

    Darlene Mcguire needs to get a life and WWAY should find some real news to report.

  • Guest111 says:

    THESE ARE YOUR WORDS, DARLENE. . . Darlene said. “I said I’m not going to breed her anymore, go ahead and take her.” Pretty clear statement you made there, lady. You are through breeding her so you were willing to get rid of her. That’s how puppy mills work. . it’s been going on for years and years. Who’s the Idiot here?

  • Doug esau says:

    Get a life. A puppy mill is where dogs are constantly bred, kept in unclean cages and never interact with humans. Akc keeps records on anyone who registers any litters. They do home inspections. The two inspections that were done at ms mcguires house were years ago when Ms Mcguire and her late Marine Corp husband raised yorkies, were given a high grade. Ms Mcguire and her late husband made wooden beds and fluffy matresses for each dog. there names were printed and mounted on wooden bones at the base of each bed. Ms Mcguire hasn’t raised dogs for over 7 years. Mcguire’s dogs are mainly males and not caged, sleep with her plus have their own bedroom with a youth bed, for those to want to take naps. They also have run of house and a doggie door so they can go back and forth to the deck. They eat eukanuba Yorkshire terrier food plus allowable human food. Only reason sheI ever bred Maleah was to get a puppy to give to members of her family.. TWO litters, then she was fixed. Also, only reason she said that Mrs.Byrnes could take her is that she has dementia and on every visit to my house, she would hold the dog and she thought it was hers. So Ms McGuire gave the dog to her…Mrs. Byrnes, not Mr. Byrnes. Mrs Byrnes is now in a nursing home. This writer obviously knows nothing about what puppy mills are. Why are you afraid to post your name?

  • Snarkmeister General says:

    111, unfortunately YOU are the one whose logic is off base here. I am not familiar with breeding best practices for Yorkies but generally there is an age for any breeding female where health becomes at risk as well as non viable offspring. If Darlene took this dog out of active breeding she showed decency, care and sensitivity.

    All breeders are not “puppy mill” operators.

  • Dougesau says:

    Let me inform you are the facts, before you run your mouth again. Ms. McGuire said she was not going to breed her any more because she bred her TWO times to get a puppy to give to two of her family members. She said MRS. Byrnes because Mrs. Byrnes had dementia and every time she visited Ms.McGuire she would hold Maleah and think it was hers. That is why Ms McGuire stated in the interview that she felt sorry for her. Ms McGuire and her late Marine Corp husband raised yorkies many years ago. They made wooden beds with wooden bone names on them. Akc who regularly makes house inspections gave them the highest grade. The yorkies that Ms.McGuire now owns are mostly males and some are near the end of their life span. They have their own bedroom with a youth bed, where they sleep at night when they are not sleeping with MsMcGuire, which is most of the time. They have a doggie door so they can go out on the deck. They eat eukanuba dog food as well as any allowable human food. They have the run of the house. If you think that is a puppy mill you are the idiot she said you are. Get you facts!,! You owe Ms.McGuire an apology, but people like you will never Admit they were wrong and they never, ever apology. So,,,I guess Ms.McGuire will just ask God to forgive you.

  • Guestomfg says:

    Why is this news? Who cares?

  • Guest9743 says:

    Why is this new you ask…it’s news because this is WWAY, a station that wants to be “first” to break the news even it is something stupid such as this story.

  • guesty says:

    There is much more to what was reported including the deputy attempting to break into the home, Mr. Byrne refusing to leave her property after being told to leave, the deputy cuffing McGuire once entry was made into the house. An entry made over what effectively is a civil issue, not criminal.

    What does the sheriff have to say about his deputy’s actions?

  • Monkey Junction says:

    They should just cut the dog in half and give each person a half.

  • Guest Reply Redux says:

    I will pay $10,000,000,000 for the rights to this story for a new Reality TV Show…”Who’s Got Said Pooch?”……..
    …..Or, trade them 40 acres of bottom swamp land in Pootville.
    a.) Why not let the dog decide who owns it? The first person it runs to when called…They Win!
    b.) Why did I comment on this story?
    c.) What will happen to Hank now in season 6 on Breaking Bad, with “WW” discovered in a book in the turlet room?
    d.) Why doesn’t my wife flush the toilet after she goes #1?
    e.) Will this K9 battle be as Big as the O.J. Simpson trail? (The 1st one)
    There’s plenty of news elsewhere out there…so GO FOR IT!
    “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.” (Unquote)

    So…where’s the story? It’s settled!
    Is there an Editor at WWAY???

  • News? says:

    This was the lead story on last night’s 6 o’clock news. Whoever made that decision should be immediately fired and returned to more fitting work stocking the shelves at Walmart or working for the TSA at ILM.

  • Doug Esau says:

    So mr Byrnes thinks the deputies handled it correctly??? Wonder if he’d feel the same way if they took a knife and tried to cut their way into his house with no paper work and on a civil matter as they did to ms. McGuire’s house. The real story is not about ownership of the dog, which is clearly Darlene mcguire’s. ( look hard at the akc official ownership paper). The real story is about how the deputies mishandled the situation and how one deputy physically assaulted Ms. McGuire . The public should be made aware of cases of abuse on the part of new Hanover county deputies. Wway, you really dropped the ball on this one

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