The country erupted in a chorus of indignation, sending howls of "what kind of monster" and variations on "get that motherf%#er" across the social mediaverse.
The dog, named Qiaoqiao, was a 7-year-old Labrador mix, according to the state newspaper, Xinhua.
And to her owner, Tian Fengbo, she was everything.
"Qiaoqiao always accompanied me. She was like a friend to me. Now I feel like I've lost a close friend," Tian reportedly told local reporters after Qiaoqiao was taken by men in a van while Tian was walking her.