Seven stolen puppies are now back home in South Yorkshire but only after their owners suffered “unnecessary distress and heartache”, police said.
Three people have admitted their roles in taking the four girls and three boys - all a cross between the poodle and Bichon Frise breeds - in the Doncaster area.
South Yorkshire Police said Richard Thomas forced his way into to a property on Cusworth Lane just before 11am on May 28 and took the animals from a pen they were in with their mother.
After cute pictures of the animals were publicised, Thomas was arrested along with two women and the puppies were recovered.
Thomas, 27, of Ennerdale Road, Wheatley Hills, Doncaster; Kerry Scase, 29, of Beech Street, South Elmsall and Tonya Newton, 25, of Almhome Lane, Arksey, all appeared at Sheffield Crown Court on Tuesday, officers said.
Thomas admitted burglary and Scase and Newton pleaded guilty to handling stolen goods.They were bailed and will be sentenced at the same court on November 25.
Detective Constable Andy Hotchkiss said: “All seven of the puppies recovered well from their ordeal, as there were concerns at the time for their wellbeing as they were too young to be away from their mother.
“The owners of the puppies suffered unnecessary distress and heartache when they were stolen. I am pleased all three have pleaded guilty and have taken responsibility for their actions.”
Owner Franchesca Knapton appealed for help to find the pups in May, after they were stolen.
She said at the time: “Their mum Meg just keeps crying. We are desperate for them back.”
She said the pups are a mixture of three black girls, one black boy, one brown girl and two caramel coloured boys.