Dog theft is on the rise. Laboratories and private people, all although they don’t question where the dogs comefrom, are willing to pay, often large sums for a pet. Sometimes dogs are kidnapped and the thieves will demand ransom for their return.
Dogs are lumped together with property crimes, making it difficult to determine the number of thefts that occur yearly.
Halloween time is particularly dangerous, especially for black cats and dogs. Cults use the animals to perform cruel rituals. Year round, stolen dogs may be used as bait to train fighting dogs. Angry neighbors who may not like you or your dog will remove your pet and bring him/her to the pound.
You can prevent dog theft by following a few simple suggestions.
Make sure your dog is microchipped and also wears a collar and ID tag. Although collars and tags can be removed. a chip is permanent. Have it checked every few months to make sure it is still functioning.
Keep your yard/garden secure. Make sure a strong fence covers the entire property, high enough to make it inaccessible by climbing over it. Keep the gate securely locked.
Keep your pet indoors when you are not at home.
If you are expecting any handymen or deliveries while you are out, inform your neighbors and ask them to please keep watch.
If your dog is outdoors in the yard, check up on him/her at intervals. Sit outside for a while to let anyone know you are watching.
Your dog should never be allowed to roam freely in the neighborhood. While it encourages theft, your dog can frighten people or be injured or killed.
Keep an eye on your dog even in off-leash areas such as doggie parks and on hikes.
Never, ever tie your dog outside when you enter a store to shop. Try shopping in dog friendly stores or leave your dog at home.
Keep all papers concerning your dog, including proof of ownership in a safe place. Take photos of your dog that clearly show the head, face, body and anything physically unusual about your dog.
If, in spite of all your precautions, the worst happens and your dog is missing, notify the police and animal control immediately. Place ads in newspapers, on radio and TV stations with complete descriptions and how to get in touch with you. Post photos around the neighborhood with a phone number where you can be reached. Don’t give out your address unless it is to someone you know personally. Enlist neighbors, friends and relatives to help.
Use internet sites such as www.petfinder.com; www.Findfido.com; www.missingpet.net. These are free sites you can use to help find your pet.