Elderly dog taken from owner’s yard in Falmouth

On Friday afternoon, a Falmouth couple found themselves living out a nightmare when their dog Guinness was taken right out of their yard.



“Apparently some lady who drives a silver Honda or Hyundai took him,” said Brittany Costa, the dog’s owner. “She never knocked on my door or anything. He was laying in my front yard in the grass.”

Costa and her fiance, Stefan Winslow, own two other dogs named Carl and Darla as well.

“They’re my children,” said Costa, “I rescued Guinness when he was 13 from a family who sold their house and bought a condo that didn’t accept animals, they had him since he was 8 weeks. He’s lived with us now for 3 years.”

Brittany Costa with her dogs. (Guinness is on the left.)

Brittany Costa with her dogs. (Guinness is on the left).

According to a neighbor, the woman in question said she thought the dog was lost.

“The man across the street, he advised her to leave Guinness because he was on someone’s property, and she chose to take him,” Costa continued.

Anyone would be upset if their dog was taken, but to make matters worse, Guinness has some specific health needs at the age of 16.

“He has separation anxiety from me and has lyrangeal paralysis, it’s when the flaps in their throats become paralyzed and stay shut making it harder to breath, so his anxiety doesn’t help,” Costa explained. “He’s on a special diet and has to take glucosamine and MSM to help with his joints.”

“He has a special $450 temper pedic bed he sleeps on every night next to my bed. I hope she at least has a dog bed for him.”

Guinness on his bed.

Guinness on his bed.

Hopefully, whether it’s by way of this post or all of the shares that Costa’s plea for help on Facebook is getting, the woman who has Guinness will realize the error of her decision to take him, and return him immediately.

“She told the guy across the street she lives ‘right around the corner,’ hopefully she has a Facebook account and can see he’s wanted back home,” Costa reasoned.

“I really appreciate the help, these dogs are my kids.”

Update: I’m very happy to say that after extensive sharing on Facebook, the boyfriend of the woman who took Guinness saw either the link to this story or to Costa’s original post and returned the dog.
I was notified of the good news this afternoon with a message from Costa:

“He’s home! Thank you for all your help!”

For all of the negative aspects of social media, it’s nice to know that sometimes Facebook can really be used as a tool for good.
Thanks to everyone for helping to track Guinness down, what a wonderful ending to a truly frightening ordeal for the family.


Chris Shorr

About Chris Shorr

Chris is a sixth generation Portlander who loves all things Maine. He has worked with mentally ill and marginalized adults at a Portland non-profit, on a lobster boat in Casco Bay, at several high-end Portland restaurants, and at a local meat packing plant. He also ran for Portland City Council in 2013, wrote a weekly column in the now defunct Portland Daily Sun, and currently writes a weekly column in The Portland Phoenix.