TAMPA - A 14 year-old girl is still recovering Wednesday, after being injured in a car crash this past weekend. Meanwhile, the teen's mother is asking for your help, after their dog disappeared during the accident.
Teenager Ciara Gutierrez is being treated at Tampa General Hospital. Right now, her mother, Angela Lawson says she's in and out of pain.
But, it's what Ciara lost in the crash that's causing the most anguish: Her 4 year-old beagle-hound mix, Bella. Lawson said, "She says she misses Bella tremendously and she just wants her found. She's very adamant about it."
Lawson says she was driving south on I-75 with Ciara and their two dogs near the I-275 split, when she saw a car stopped on the interstate. She swerved to the left and her car flipped over. Lawson said, "We had to be actually rescued from the car from bystanders and witnesses until paramedics and the FHP showed up."
One of the dogs, Bella's brother, stayed. But Bella was nowhere to be found. Lawson said, "I think they ran out after we actually stopped because the back window was busted out."
The family has had the dogs since they were puppies.
Tiffany Desouza, Ciara's cousin posted flyers around the area. Desouza said, "I put some at gas stations right off the interstate, the Petsmart, my apartment complex."
Bella wears a pink and black zebra collar with her name and contact information on it, but she does not have a microchip.
As for Ciara, her right thumb had to be amputated, and she needs reconstructive surgery. She could go home as early as next week, but tells her mom her real joy will come once Bella's home too. Lawson said, "I think it would help her tremendously as far as getting her happy again."
If you have seen Bella, you can call our newsroom at (813) 354-2800 or email our James Jackson at firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com. We will put you in touch with the dog's family.