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The Siberian Times

Pensioner dies of broken heart after failing to find his kidnapped dog

By The Siberian Times reporter
05 April 2016

Yan - 'the only friend in my life' - was stolen in February, prompting extraordinary search by Vladimir Davydov, 77.

Vladimir Davtdov, 77, with the sign 'Help me find my friend'. Picture: Noah's Ark/Noyev Kovcheg

His sad case touched many people in Russia and even around the world as he hunted his beloved German Shepherd taken by dog snatchers. On some of the coldest days of winter, he stood a lonely vigil, leaning on his crutch, on the streets of Bratsk, at the central market or railway station, clutching his sign reading 'Help me find my friend'. He hardly slept, waiting for his dog, hoping he would return home.

Vladimir Davydov


Vladimir and Yan

On some of the coldest days of winter, he stood a lonely vigil, leaning on his crutch, clutching his sign reading 'Help me find my friend'. Picture: Bratsk Television Studio, Noah's Ark/Noyev Kovcheg

Yan was 'my only partner in life', and he and his pet were known by many local people, with the friendly dog pulling local children on sledges in the park. 

An army of volunteers helped his hunt, but Yan was not found. Vladimir was hospitalised in late March and died from a heart attack on 1 April, his last wish of seeing his dog once more unfulfilled. 

Daria Tatarnikova, volunteer, posted this message on social media sites: 'Dear members of the group. Our old man has died. The one about whom we worried most of all, Vladimir Davydov. The one whom we helped all together to search for his friend Yan. I think it is our common case - to help with his funeral. 

Daria Tatarnikova

Vladimir Davydov

Vladimir Davydov


Daria Tatarnikova: 'I didn't think people would respond so well but they are emotional over this situation.' Pictures: Bratsk Television Studio, Noah's Ark/Noyev Kovcheg

'He had a sister, but she lives in the Ukraine. It will take a lot of time to find her. Maybe each of us could donate some money, even 50 roubles will help.' During the weekend, people have gathered 80,000 roubles - $1,150.

She thanked people who gave money. 'I didn't think people would respond so well but they are emotional over this situation.' Part of the funds gathered by the volunteers will be spent on the little monument to pensioner and his dog, in memory of loyalty and a strong friendship. The volunteers still hope to locate his dog and understand what happened to the animal. 

Comments (3)

That really made me sad. Wow, there are a lot of sick people in the world.
джэррй крэник, канада
12/04/2016 10:06
That's really sad....T_T
zina, china
06/04/2016 21:54
I am so sorry to hear about Vladimir and I continue to hope very much Yan is found. Thank you to everyone who has been helping Vladimir in his search for Yan and now for very sadly, Vladimir's memorial and continued search for Yan.
Pamela Tetarenko, League City, USA
05/04/2016 20:06

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