WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) -- Wilmington Police are searching for a man they say stole 10 puppies from a home then tried to sell them on Facebook, but the owners were hot on his trail.
Melissa Moore and B.J. Fulmore came home Sunday morning to find their house ransacked, TVs and gaming systems missing and 10 of their 12 puppies stolen.
"When I found out they were gone, my heart dropped," Moore said.
Moore feared the three-week-old puppies, still too young to be away from their mother, could die in the wrong hands.
"I couldn't eat. I couldn't sleep. I couldn't really focus all too well," Moore said. "All I could do was lay in the bed and just think, 'Oh, God.'"
"It's a feeling that is undescribable, but it's close to where as a parent, losing like a newborn child," Fulmore said.
That morning, Moore and Fulmore stumbled upon something suspicious.
Moore went on Facebook and found an ad posted for blue nose pit puppies for sale.
"I hit him up on somebody else's profile, and he responded really quick to selling these dogs for $200 and $300 a piece," she said.
Moore met up with Michael Hines, 23, at Walmart. When Moore saw the pups, she knew right away they were hers. While a friend distracted Hines, Moore grabbed the puppies and left.
Now all 10 puppies are back with their mom, brothers and sisters and human companions.
"They make me happy," Moore said. "They bring me life."
Fulmore said, "They're everything to me."
Hines is charged with breaking and entering and larceny of a canine.
Anyone with information on where he might be is asked to contact the Wilmington Police Department.