A beloved rescue dog who spends his days at the helicopter base of Waikato Hospital has been stolen from the home of one of the crew.
Thieves snatched Buster from the Hamilton home of Westpac Rescue helicopter crewman Bill McNeilly - and McNeilly and fellow crew are desperate to get him back.
The white rescue dog, who has distinctive eyes - one brown and one blue - is a regular at the helicopter base and is adored by the hospital staff.
McNeilly said he was lost without his pet and asked whoever had him to return him - no questions asked.
"Buster does have a very important role, and he is my best mate...Buster just loves everyone, he loves his job when he comes in," McNeilly posted on Facebook.
"If you have him, please make sure he is warm at night and he LOVES his food, and like to have cuddles, I really want him back, no questions asked, even bring him back anonymously and say you found him."
McNeilly adopted the Dalmatian-staffy cross from the SPCA 12 months ago.
Buster had been left on a five-metre lead in the backyard of McNeilly's Ohaupo home on Friday while he went to the gym.
When he arrived home around 4.40pm, Buster was nowhere to be seen.
He realised Buster hadn't just slipped off his lead and escaped because his collar was gone and the lead was still intact.
There had been one reported sighting of a dog like Buster with a group of teenagers around 5pm near Tomlin and Ohaupo Rd. Police were following the sighting up.
Anyone who has seen Buster is asked to call the Hamilton Police Station on 07 858 6200.
People can also email Constable Mark Harrison at MHDQ50@police.govt.nz or leave information anonymously via Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.