Lindsey Martinez got what she wanted for her birthday Wednesday — both of her stolen puppies returned.

Martinez, a breeder who enters professional dog shows, had two pit bull puppies stolen from her house, near 5400 South and 4600 West, Tuesday. The man who stole them had been at her house two days earlier with two young girls looking at the dogs.

On Tuesday, the man returned with another man, and pretended to be interested in purchasing the puppies. Instead, he pushed Martinez down, grabbed the dogs and ran.

About 1 p.m. Wednesday, one of the girls who was with the man the first time returned one of the puppies. She told Martinez she had bought the dog from the man for $100 but did not know it was stolen until she heard it on the news.

About 6 p.m. the girl returned with the second dog, Martinez said. She told Martinez the dog had been dropped off at another person's house, but that person said he "didn't want any part of it" after he too learned it was stolen, Martinez said.

The search for the dog-napper continued Thursday although Salt Lake County Sheriff's investigators knew who they were trying to find.

"I'm grateful to have them back," Martinez said. "I didn't think I'd ever see them again. She at least had some kind of conscience."

Martinez said she will continue to try to sell the two puppies, the last ones from a litter of 1. But this time, she said she will have to figure out a way to be more careful about screening who comes to her house and what the potential buyer intends to do with the pet.

"We definitely have to do something different than before," she said.

Martinez is an advocate of pit bulls, saying they get a bad rap from people who train them to be mean and try to use them for dog fighting. When trained properly and put in loving homes, she said they can be good pets.

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