Recently, The Inquisitr told you about Robby Gabbert, the Colorado Springs-based soldier who found out that his ex-girlfriend sold his best friend — his dog Baxter — while he was deployed in Afghanistan. Gabbert placed a Craigslist ad trying to get the dog back.
When the Craigslist ad went viral, some concerned local people set up a Facebook campaign to locate Baxter and return him to the soldier. People hoped the beloved pooch will be waiting to greet his buddy when Gabbert gets back from Afghanistan.
Well, now we have an update for you. Turns out there’s good news — and bad news.
First, the good news. Gabbert’s parents located Baxter, the 3-year-old Shiba Inu that “Robby” Gabbert, whose unit is based in Fort Carson, adopted when he was just a puppy. As you can see, Robby and Baxter got along famously.
But when Gabbert was sent over to Afghanistan, he left the dog with his girlfriend. Unfortunately, the girlfriend soon became an ex-girlfriend and apparently just to rub it in, she sold Baxter without telling Robby what was going on.
Now thanks to the viral ad and the Facebook effort, Baxter’s new owners have been located. And that brings us to the bad news.
The new owners won’t give Baxter back to the Gabbert family because their own kids are already in love with the dog.
“They keep saying they have children that are attached,” Robby’s mother, Karen, told KOAA TV News. “Well my child is attached to the dog. Just because he’s older doesn’t mean he’s not my child.”
Gabbert’s father, Bob, said his son has been deployed for nine months. The girlfriend, whose name they wouldn’t reveal, was supposed to send the dog to Gabbert’s parents. All the arrangements were made, but Baxter never arrived.
That’s when the ex-gal pal told them she had sold Baxter out from under them. But she claimed she did not remember who bought the dog. Then she cut off all communication with the Gabbert family.
A supporter of the “Bring Baxter Back” cause, Nancy Wallace, says that the point is not to shame the new owners. They just want Baxter to come home, so he’ll be there when Robby also comes home.
“No one wants to out them,” she says. “No one wants to give them any negative publicity. We just really want Baxter back home with Robby. That’s just not something we should let him sit over in Afghanistan worrying about. He should be doing the job he’s there for and not having to worry about that. He should know that his dog is home and with his family and will be waiting for him when he gets home.”
Robert Gabbert is scheduled to be deployed in Afghanistan for another six months. His family is now looking into legal options to get Baxter back.
UPDATE: Per email correspondence with Spc. Gabbert, Baxter has been returned; we hope they are as happy together as in the pictures above. The story of how their reunion came to be can be read at this link.