The Simon’s Town community rallied together to help find Donovan and Victor’s beloved puppy Patches after he was stolen from them while they slept.


Simon’s Town, Western Cape – Nikkita Rohlandt has warmed the hearts of thousands of people in South Africa. It all started on the 20th of February when two of the small town’s most prominent and popular homeless men had their beloved puppy stolen.

According to Nikkita, Donovan and Victor have been living on the streets for many years. During her 11 years as a resident in Simon’s Town, she walked passed the kindhearted men daily. They had a dog “Squinty” for 13 years who sadly passed of old age late in 2018.

The community rallied to support their broken hearts, by giving them a little puppy named Patches. The men were so happy they beamed at everyone that passed by or stopped to give Patches a little love.

“I walk past Donovan and Victor every day, as they have their regular spot that they sit at everyday, to and from work. I have gotten to know them through the years and figured even if you just lend somebody an ear, it means so much more than what people think. After all, they are human like all of us.

When I stop off by them, I would play with Patches, take him treats, take a warm plate of food to his owners, clothes, shoes etc. Never have they once asked me for a cent. Sometimes they get an abundance of food that locals might drop with them, then they would distribute it to other homeless in the area instead of throwing it away or it going to waste.”

They live on an abandoned storefront and are always there. On the night of the 20th of February, another homeless man, plagued with a drug addiction, snuck up to where Donovan and Victor sleep, he unclipped Patches’ harness and slipped away into the night with the puppy under his arm.

The next morning, Donovan and Victor were too distraught to consoul. The community rallies and sent out “missing” flyers, created multiple posts on Facebook and looked everywhere they could. A few people came forward saying that they had seen Patches with a man named Angelo aka “Clown”.

Nikkita became the hero of the story while she was doing a walk for Cancer in Greenpoint a few days after Patches was stolen.

“When I walked passed Donovan and Victor that morning on my way to work I immediately noticed that Patches was not there, we cried together, and of course cursed the person who took him. Patches was sighted a few different places which came through local WhatsApp and Facebook groups.

Locals would go out to the sightings without success. With me not having my own transport I could not go out there when I wanted to, to help the search. Nevertheless, a few months ago my friends, our parents and I decided to do the Lace up for Cancer walk in Green Point on Sunday, 24 Feb 2019.”

Once they had finished off the Cancer walk, they set off back towards Simon’s Town. That is when luck jumped on their side and Nikkita spotted Patches. She confronted Angelo, the man who had stolen Patches and refused to let him walk off with the puppy. She was so scared he would hurt her or Patches so she paid him off to save the puppy.

“We got to the car and on our way to pick up our parents, Anjie told me to look at the puppy walking on the side walk. I immediately turned around and when I saw the pup, I knew exactly that it was Patches. I told Anjie to stop immediately, I told her to find a parking and I jumped out the car not caring about on coming traffic.

I approached the guy, which is Angelo, and immediately Patches recognised me and was super excited. I picked him up and with him licking me all over my face, I am talking to Angelo asking where he got this dog. I claimed to him that it is my dog and that he could c how happy the dog is to c me. I felt very intimidated by how Angelo was dressed and how calm he was. I kept an eye on his hands at all times just in case he tried pulling something out.

I would take a step back and he would take a step closer to me. That’s when I mentioned to him that literally only had R300 in my purse. I will give it to him, but I am not leaving without the dog. Immediately he was interested in the money. I had to convince him to walk with me to the car where my money was and Anjie and Danica were waiting in the car for me.

Angelo kept wanting to take Patches from me and at this stage I refused as I was scared he would run away with him. I knew this was a once in a lifetime oppurtunity being in the right place at the right time. I asked him to wait about 5m away from the car just in case he tried something funny, I opened the door slightly and asked Anjie to get the R300 out of my purse. While waiting I closed the door again and focused my attention back on Angelo. Anjie signalled that she has the money, I took it from her and gave it to Angelo. He said thank you, and calmly walked away. I got in the car quickly and told Anjie to drive! I was so relieved that the situation ended the way it did and that no one got hurt.”

They rushed home so they could surprise Donovan and Victor. Patches was quite dehydrated and his little puppy paws were burnt from walking on the hot tar. Nikkita decided to film the happy reunion and it had us in tears! Not only has the community rejoiced the reunion, they have rallied together to get Patches chipped.

“He was taken to our local NPO called TEARS where they act as a shelter and VET, for one of his scheduled vaccinations. Those 2 gentlemen and that pup has climbed deep into alot of Simon’nites hearts.”

“The post has gotten such a great response which I didn’t expect. I am a Simon’s Town local and have been for 11 years. This quiant little town has such a close knit community and when something as heart wrenching as the story on my post happens, we all seem to come together.”

Take a look at the happy reunion below.

Sources: Good Things Guy Interview
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About the Author

Tyler Leigh Vivier is a writer for Good Things Guy.

Her passion is to spread good news across South Africa with a big focus on environmental issues, animal welfare and social upliftment. Outside of Good Things Guy, she is an avid reader and lover of tea.

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