CINCINNATI — It's not the Christmas morning anyone wishes for: The owners of one East Walnut Hills pet supply store found the store's glass shattered and cash registers emptied Saturday.
Argos Natural Pet Food & Supply was just one of the businesses along Woodburn Avenue broken into overnight.
"Ten cars have been broken into along with our store and another store down the street," Simon Coriell said.
Thieves took off with their register and donation jar — owner Elisabeth Mayer said they likely stole around $2,000.
"I definitely felt violated," Mayer said. "I know times are tough right now and I'm not sure you needed this money so desperately...but just know that you took funds that our customers were gracious enough to put in the donation jar — and there were a lot of funds in there to go to Animal Rescue, which is really near and dear to my heart."
The jar and register were found empty a few blocks away from the store. While they may have been there for the money, Mayer said, one of the cats inside the store climbed out of the window during the break-in. A neighbor found the cat, Precious, outside and safely returned her.
"What would have devastated me the most would have been if something had happened to one of those cats," Mayer said. "You know, money's money, but to me those cats are precious."
While the investigation is ongoing, business will continue as usual. Argos Pet Food & Supply plans to open Sunday, asking customers to help refill their donation jar.
"You know, we will live and learn from this, and we have a big supportive neighborhood that will help us out, but we didn't lose that much and everyone is safe," Coriell said.