Israeli security forces discovered a dog stole six months ago while searching for illegal weapons and drugs in the Negev area in southern Israel.
During a raid in the Bedouin city of Rahat, officers discovered the dog named "Chetz" - stolen from his owner in Be'er Sheva, which is located only 26.3 km away.
During the weapons raid, police forces noticed a malnourished dog tied up to an object, with no food or water nearby.
The identity of the dog was discovered after police officers located a tracking chip attached to the dog and managed to trace the owners of the Belgian Shepherd. Chetz, starving and anxious, was ecstatic to return home to his owner.
In recent months the phenomena of theft of pets, especially dogs, has become common in the area due to rampant crime in the local Arab sector.
An intelligence officer from the Rahat police station said, "the dog didn't have water or food, and was very skinny. We brought the chip scanner from the station and tracked down the owner. Within an hour he came with his son. The dog immediately recognized him and jumped on him. It was very emotional.
"Although we deal with serious crimes, sometimes there are events and small success stories like these that lift our spirits," said the officer.
Jacky Saban, Chetz's owner, said he was shocked to see the state of his dog when it was returned to him.
"A police officer from the Rahat station called me last night. He said 'Hello, I'm an officer at the station'. I asked 'what have I done?'. The officer asked if my dog had been stolen," he said.
"He was skin and bones. He was abused. He needs to be treated and brought back at least a bit closer to how he was. He's so happy now that he's home," he added.
"When I got there I just said his name 'Chetz', he ran to me and almost knocked me over."
As part of a sweeping mission to find illegal weapons in the Negev, the Rahat police forces uncovered pipe bombs, a revolver gun, ignitions for explosive devices, an operating box, and a grenade. In addition, large amounts of drugs were found, including crystal meth and cannabis.