A YOUNG girl who had her prized pug stolen is thrilled to have her best friend back again after her mum sparked a campaign to bring her home.

Thieves snatched six-month-old Millie from the back garden of a house in Lever Street, Radcliffe between 8.30pm and 9pm on New Year’s Day – leaving five-year-old Tayer Shannon devastated.

The pooch was bought as a birthday present for Tayer in August and furious mum Vanessa Shannon had offered a cash reward for anyone who could help her reunite her daughter with her pet.

On Friday Vanessa, aged 22, was called by the police and informed a pug had been handed in to Beech House Veterinary Surgery in Stopes Road after a woman had seen it run into the road.

Vanessa said: “I had been knocking on a few doors nearby to see if anybody had my dog or had seen anything and a few hours later I heard a pug had been handed in at the vets – freezing and covered in mud.

“I think Millie was too hot to handle and as soon as whoever stole her knew I was going round houses they let her go and took her collar off too.

“Millie is now safe and home where she belongs. There was an instant smile straight back on Tayer’s face when she saw her and lots of cuddles.”

Vanessa is convinced someone had been watching and waiting for her to let Millie out into the garden.

The pug, worth around £1,000, was snatched in the few minutes while Vanessa was inside her home making a bottle for ten-month-old son Taylor.

After Millie’s disappearance hit her little girl hard Vanessa, launched a social media campaign to find the pup.

She added: “Tayer had been saying Millie’s name in her sleep.

“When she first heard me say something about Millie being gone she was crying before she even got down the stairs.

“She cried so much she made herself sick. I have never seen her like that before.”

Veterinary nurse Jamie Roberts, aged 28, was on duty at Beech House on Friday night when a woman brought the frightened puppy into the surgery.

She said: “A woman handed a pug into us saying she had been running loose on Stopes Road and she was worried the dog would get hit by a car.

“She didn’t have a microchip so we were going to keep her over the weekend, see if anyone called the vet to report her missing and if not call the dog warden on Monday.

“There just happened to be a customer in the waiting room who put a status on Facebook asking whether anyone had lost a pug.

“Straight away she had a massive response from people providing information about Vanessa’s hunt for Millie so we called the police.”