Number Of Dog Thefts Has Risen Dramatically During Lockdown, According To New Figures
Dog thefts have risen dramatically during lockdown, according to new figures released by a group that reunites owners with their missing pets.
Thefts from both kennels and people's homes have gone up by 65 percent compared to the same period last year, the Sun reports.
DogLost said they had reports of 48 incidents of stolen pets from 23 March to 1 June this year, compared to just 29 over the same time frame in 2019.
The group says that certain breeds in particular are being targeted by cruel thieves - including popular pets chihuahuas, French bulldogs and cockapoos.
Earlier this month, 17 dogs and puppies were taken during a raid at a kennels in Barton Mills in Suffolk.
One family who lost their cocker spaniel and cockapoo in the raid said their four children are devastated over the loss of their beloved pets.
They are offering a £4,000 reward in an attempt to get their dogs and urged: "They are our family pets. Our children are in pieces."
More Like ThisMore Like This
Meanwhile, Cambridgeshire Police said there were 17 dog thefts in the past two months, including one pet owner who had three dogs stolen from a kennel in Stretham.
In Grimsby this week, a woman claims a man attempted to snatch her female cavapoo and believed he wanted to make her into a 'breeding machine' to sell the pups, which can go for thousands of pounds.
Speaking to the Daily Mail, police said that 'anecdotal evidence' seems to back up the figures from DogLost, but that police forces don't keep specific records about dogs as the crime is classed as 'a theft of property'.
However, according to a freedom of information request seen by the news outlet, an average of five dogs were stolen in England and Wales every day last year - and police said the true figure could be higher as the crime doesn't always go reported.
Jane Frankland, of DogLost, told the Daily Mail: "Many dogs are being stolen because of a sudden high demand due to an increase in the price of puppies.
"Dogs are taken from gardens, kennels, even on walks. We advise people to always be on your guard."
Featured Image Credit: Storyblocks