The Port Elizabeth community banded together in a tireless
search for missing dog Marco – but the saga ended in tragedy.
The Australian Cattle Dog was found dead on Saturday, the
Facebook page set up to search for Anneli van Jaarsveld’s beloved pet
“Marco was found dead a bit earlier, he has been
identified and taken home and buried in his garden.
“From the bottom of our hearts we thank each and every
one of you. Marco’s memory will NOT end here.”
In one of the largest campaigns of its kind in South Africa,
a huge reward was offered up for the beautiful dog’s safe return.
Anneli and her loved ones managed to raise R20 000 on Go
Fund Me for Marco, who went missing on 24 February.
“Marco is quickly becoming the most WANTED dog on
Facebook with over 250 000 eyes on him after he was stolen from his home in
Port Elizabeth,” she wrote on Go Fund Me.
“We’ve set up this trust to not only make Marco the
most VALUABLE to try and protect him.”
Anneli, who lives on a small farm in Colleen Glen where she
breeds horses, says Marco was stolen from her front garden by men in a dark
blue BMW with GP number plates.
One of the men on the smallholding let the men in the main
gate, because Anneli had been expecting people to look at some of her horses.
“Marco would usually go out of the gate, greet the
guests and run back with their cars. He is not one to go wandering off,”
the emotional animal lover explained.
“The gate closed and the BMW drove away. When the worker
opened the gate again, Marco was gone.”
Thousands of people joined Anneli in her search, flooding
her Facebook page with questions and well wishes.
“He is the most sought-after dog in the world. People
from overseas call me to hear how they can help. Even people from Kuala Lumpur
have already called,” she told YOU.
Anneli said Marco was like a child to her. “He did
everything with me and was never even a metre away from me.
“He slept with us on the bed. He always drove on the
back of the bakkie. People in the town refer to my pick-up as the ‘Marco Mobile’.”