Dog theft has increased significantly of late and is becoming a serious problem for owners, and the loss of a dearly loved pet can can often cause considerable emotional upset. Our PCSO, Sue Holt, has provided some guidance on precautions that can be taken to reduce the risk of this happening and these will be found on the attached leaflet. We would reinforce these, and in particular the point about leaving a dog unattended as can happen when shopping, leaving it loose in an accessible garden, or when walking the dog and allowing it to wander out of sight. It only takes a few seconds for the thief to grab the dog and run off, and a long, extending lead can be easily cut!
Unfortunately dog theft is not viewed in law as an emergency; pets are regarded as ‘property’! That said, the received advice is that if, despite taking precautions, it were to happen a ‘999’ call would be the best way to report the crime rather than the less urgent ‘101’.
We have also attached two photographs. The first illustrates some blue markings placed on a garden fence post that are believed to indicate that the property has a dog in residence. The second does not relate to pets; it shows other symbols which are known to have been used to indicate the ‘potential’ of a particular property for consideration by a potential criminal.