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Wellbeing: Protect Your Dog Against Pet Theft

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Today sees the start of Pet Theft Awareness Week. With increasing reports of dogs being stolen, snatched at knifepoint or kidnapped filtering through on our social media feeds and in the papers, there’s never been a better time to sit up, pay attention and get behind a campaign, which is pushing for stronger sentences for anyone involved in pet theft, and to encourage owners to take preventative measures to protect their pet.

Mutt or high-priced Pedigree dog, a dog is a not an object. For the majority of owners, their dog is at the heart of the family so to lose him at the hands of cruel thieves or heartless opportunist would be shattering. For anyone that has gone through this painful and traumatic experience, there's no comfort in the punishment served out to the wicked people behind these horrid crimes. Pet theft legislation isn’t tough enough and the police and the courts have little power to prioritise the theft of pets over the theft of possessions. 

What can you do to ensure the safety of your own dog? The organisers of Pet Theft Awareness Week share some important measures:

  • Ensure your dog is microchipped and then keep your microchip records up to date! Whilst this won’t stop them from being stolen, it will increase your chances of getting them back
  • Be aware that thieves will take dogs from gardens. Consider installing CCTV
  • Take regular photos of your dog and keep them handy so you have an up to date photos should the worse happen
  • Don't leave your dog unattended outside shops – if you’re with someone take it in turns to stay with the dog or if solo, you’re best to leave them at home
  • Be vigilant that thieves will grab dogs from owners on walks
  • Beware of strangers taking an interest in your dog and don’t share any of your dog’s personal details
  • Inform anyone looking after your pets of your concerns. If your children are walking your dogs explain to them what could happen
  • Never leave your dog unattended in a car


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Pet Theft Awareness Week run from the 14th to 21st March and is backed by a number of organisations and companies including Pet LogDoglost.co.ukThe Kennel Club and Viovet. The internet-based Pet Theft Awareness Week is encouraging dog-lovers to spread the word through activities such as liking and sharing their Facebook page, following and re-tweeting posts from their Twitter feed, printing off posters and persuading places such as your supermarket, pet shop, town hall and of course the local vets to display them. Most importantly, they are urging people to sign their e-petition to lobby the government to introduce a Pet Theft Law. We’ve done it and it takes all of five minutes to help make a difference. To get involved and for more tips on pet safety. visit Pettheft.co.uk.

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