For Rachel Freda and Brittany Ellis of Wauwatosa, Wisconsin, the new year got off to an upsetting start. They were carjacked at gunpoint by two men on the south side of Milwaukee, and the thieves made off with their most precious cargo — a pit bull mix puppy named Bando, whom they’d adopted just four weeks earlier.

Ellis and Freda exited the car with pistols to their heads. As the women pleaded to keep Bando, one thief wrestled him out of Ellis’s arms and tossed him in the car. Then, they drove off.

Bando was nowhere to be seen when police located the stolen car an hour and a half later. The devastated women took to local media with a plea for the public’s assistance in finding the pup.

After the story aired on Milwaukee’s TMJ4 channel Thursday night, someone recognized Bando and contacted the women. He’d been found wandering in the area where the carjacking had occurred.

Freda rushed to reunite with Bando and eagerly returned home with him. As she waited for Ellis to arrive home, she was joined by a crew from TMJ4, who captured part two of the reunion on camera.