What's the Name of That Book??? discussion

The Tormentors
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SOLVED: Children's/YA > Juvenile/YA / Boy seeks dog stolen by abusive trainers. [s]

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M— | 379 comments Does anyone recall a juvenile/young adult book about a boy trying to recover his stolen German Shepherd dog?

I don't remember many details about the story, I'm afraid, but I can recall was pretty vivid. The boy's dog was a family pet and very friendly. The dog had been stolen when the boy and an older family member of his went into a convenience store, left the dog casually tied in the back of their pick-up truck, and returned to find the dog gone. The boy eventually figured out that the dog had been stolen by a group of people who trained and sold dogs as attack dogs, and they used very cruel, abusive methods to make the dogs vicious, like fill waterguns with ammonia and squirt the dogs in the eyes. The boy even managed to go undercover at the training facility by getting a job there so that he could snope around.

The boy was fairly young, 12ish to 15ish. I don't believe he was old enough to drive. I'm pretty sure the dog was female, and it was a plot point in the book that she was a very pretty dog of unusual color, like solid black or solid white. There were a couple of lines of text about the owner of the attack-dog facility was unhappy that his underling had stolen an unusually colored dog because they were so distinctive and didn't the underling remember all the attention they had accidentally gathered the last time they stole an unusually colored dog?

I'm pretty sure the dog was a German Shepherd but, if she wasn't, she was some other breed of large dog popular as an attack dog, like a pit bull or a Doberman. The evil trainers might have been racists as well as abusive to animals, the boy might have been Hispanic, and the police might have supported the boy as he worked undercover to help break up the whole training operation (not just find the one stolen dog). ...But my mind might have invented those details.

I don't remember any illustrations in the story. I probably read in the early 90s, but I think I found it in a public library and it could have been published many years earlier than that.

Thanks much for the help!

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M— | 379 comments Found! The Tormentors by Lynn Hall.

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