Dog owners are being urged to keep a close eye on their pets following a rise in dog thefts across the country.
Hackney area is especially being targeted, reports of vans used to transport stolen dogs.
There are fears puppies bought during lockdown could be a particular target. Dog thieves have an “extra incentive” to steal un-neutered dogs because of their potential to breed new litters in time for Christmas.
KEEPING YOUR DOG SAFE
Police across the country have also called on dog owners to be on high alert, warning thieves may be using cable ties or chalk markings to mark outhouses with dogs at risk.
In addition to knowing how thieves operate, there are things you can do to make it difficult for them to target your dog.
Beware of strangers asking you questions about your dog.
HD outdoor cameras are handy to use in your garden if you’re worried about threats. They can provide a constant video stream to your house, letting you know what’s going on at all times.
WHO TO CONTACT
The POLICE and ask for a crime reference number. This will make it easier to find out about the precise nature of their investigation.
Animal Welfare Services - Islington: 020 7974 5976 (out of hours: 07825 098947)
Register your missing pet on a dedicated website, such as Animal Search UK. Again, this will make it easier for members of the public to find and help return your dog.
WHAT YOU CAN DO TO HELP
Help spread the word if any dogs are stolen or lost - use local community apps like Nextdoor or Gumtree!
Share with local dog-walking businesses and local vets to post on social media.
Make posters and display them in local areas and relevant places such as vets, local parks etc. The poster should include a clear photograph and details of the circumstances.
Be extremely cautious at any large dog meetings. If you attend one, make sure your dog stands out in the crowd - with a colourful jacket, bow tie, lights on the collar and keep a close eye on them.
*STICKING WITH YOUR DOG IS THE BEST WAY TO KEEP THEM SAFE*
Follow this link form Bluecross to find out more ways you can protect your dog from theft.