Sisu. the one-year-old lab mix who repeatedly tried to steal a purple unicorn toy from a Dollar General in North Carolina, is now at Lab Rescue LRCP.  He is receiving training before heading to his forever home.

The world was charmed by the stray’s fascination with a particular unicorn stuffed toy.  Thanks to animal control officer Samantha Lane, who purchased the $10 toy for Sisu, the dog will be taking his unicorn with him to training.

It is still unclear why that particular toy was so important to Sisu.  He had to go through the entire store to reach the Easter section where the unicorn was displayed.  His repeated actions of pulling out that unicorn is what landed him in the Duplin County Animal Services shelter.


Sisu, who was named  by shelter workers after the dragon in Disney’s new film, Raya and the Last Dragon, hasn’t let his unicorn out of his sight.  It stays with him where ever he goes according to Newburn, a shelter supervisor.

The shelter staff report that Sisu is good as long as the unicorn stays by him, but they noticed that he won’t mess with it when it gets dirty.  He puts his dirty unicorn to the side and just stares at it.  Once the toy is washed, Sisu resumes laying on it.

The shelter staff is very fond of Sisu and wants him to succeed in his new home.  Currently Sisu has trouble interacting with other dogs, likely due to his time as a stray.  The training Sisu will be receiving at Lab Rescue LRCP will address his behavior issues.

Over the next few weeks, Sterrie Weaver of Lab Rescue LRCP, will work with him.  The goal is to help Sisu feel more comfortable around other canines and ready for his new life.

Weaver says it is not uncommon for strays to have to fend for themselves and worry about other dogs taking their food or toys.  He believes Sisu will calm down once he realizes he is in a safe place.

Newburn and his team plan to keep track of Sisu through his training and adoption journey.  The adorable canine has attracted attention from as far away as Australia and Russia.  Newburn has been fielding calls from people wanting to know more about the dog who just wanted to be with his unicorn.

Seeing how at peace Sisu is when he has his purple unicorn lifts the spirits of the staff at the animal shelter.  “It’s a tough job, but it’s a rewarding job, and I see smiles on my staff’s faces now,” Newburn adds.

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