7 tips to protect your Seeing Dog – or any dog! – from ‘dognappers’!
During Victorian times dog thieves were rampant around the streets of London. They operated very closely with ‘dog finders’ and ‘dog restorers’ who charged fees of their own for the safe return of the stolen dogs. Then there were the street sellers of dogs, some of whose animals may well have been the by-products of the dog stealing racket, for which the ‘dog restorer’ had been unable to negotiate a safe return to family life.
So, the theft of dogs has been around for a long time. (But I doubt it was as organised then as it is now).
We all need to constantly remind ourselves and others that all should treat dogs like any other valuable and irreplaceable property.
Be aware that thieves can strike at any time and anyone who becomes a victim will find the experience unbelievably distressing especially when the dog is never seen again. They will even target whole litters so breeders should be aware that low life may target them.
- Check how secure your garden is- especially when a footpath or field borders it.
- Avoid leaving your dogs outside shops or the car. They do get pinched from locked cars!
- When giving your dog a run just watch out for dubious characters who seem to be taking an interest and keep the dog close to you.
- If you have a brood then be wary how many people you tell. Breeding bitches can be worth a lot to a thief.
- Keep up to date photos of your dogs. Take special note of any unusual features.
- Check the details re the microchip are still accurate.
- If you suspect your dog has been stolen as opposed to simply ’gone missing’ then report it to the police and insist it is recorded as a crime.
Finally, remember, help is readily available. Look up Dog Theft Action on your computer for lists of organisations dedicated to help you get your dog back.
Be vigilant, stay alert and remember that by following these tips, and others, you and your dog can stay safe.