There are a number of reasons why some people will take action and steal a dog. Purebreds can be sold to pet stores and breeders. Smaller dogs have been known to be sold and used as bait for dogfighting rings. There are even some dogs that have been stolen for their fur.
It is not the most amusing subject that we are discussing today but it a reality that still has a stronghold on our society and often goes unpunished and to avoid losing our beloved dog, we have to be pro-active at all times.
Here are some steps you can take to assure the safety of your four-legged friend.
When outside in public – Keep your dog on a leash
Dogs without a leash are more likely to be targeted and stolen. It’s much simpler for a thief to take a dog that’s wandering around by itself and yes, even under your supervision, than a dog that is physically attached to you by a leash. It just takes a few seconds of inattention or that your dog is out of your view for the disappearing act to happen.
Always keep the fence door locked
Make sure that your gate is always locked if you leave your dog out in the yard, you can make it more difficult for the thief to get to your dog. You should also avoid signs like “Warning: Bulldog” because it may cause more harm than help by drawing the attention of those seeking a specific breed.
You should not leave your dog outdoors unattended
Talking about a fence, Unless it is a very tall one, a fence is not enough to discourage thieves to take off with your friend and this is especially true for those whose yard is visible from the sidewalk in front of your house or any discreet access around your yard.
Be wary of strangers who are a bit too curious about your dog
Most of us just love to talk about our dog to other people. Be aware of the type of information you might be sharing with someone you don’t know. Though most times, it just a lot of “dog talk” between 2 canine lovers, you should avoid sharing detailed information about your dog’s breeding, cost, or where you live.
Never, ever leave your dog alone in the car
There are no good reasons to mention why you should. There is a big risk of endangering the dog by overheating for the temperatures will rise much faster in an enclosed car than outdoors and if you leave the window partially opened for fresh air, well it may also attract pet thieves. If a thief is not necessarily out after stealing dogs, the opened window can be easy access for other items such as your GPS unit or other expensive items and by breaking into your car, it could also allow your dog to escape.
Never leave your dog tied up outside a store
Though it is something we see around us every day, such an act makes a dog vulnerable to potential thieves, especially when this same location is frequented at a regular pace. It is much safer to visit only dog-friendly locations or have someone come along with you who can keep an eye on your dog while you go inside.
A microchip can make a big difference!
Nowadays, a simple dog tag just isn’t enough. Anyone, with dishonest intentions, can very easily remove a collar. A modern microchip is absolute proof of ownership and it is a standard procedure for veterinarians and shelters to scan for a microchip when receiving dogs at their facilities. If your dog has a microchip to properly retrace his identity can greatly increase the chances of a reunion. A serious study on the matter concluded that 52% of dogs with microchips were returned to their owners successfully as opposed to less than 22% for dogs without these microchips.
Remember that even by using these preventative measures, your dog can still be stolen. In the event that this should happen, take immediate action immediately for it can make all the difference in the outcome.
Report the crime to the local police and you should advise an animal control officer of the situation, make sure to ask them to list your missing dog in the “stolen article” category on the FBI’s National Crime Information Center (NCIC). Also, go over to your neighborhood where the dog disappeared and talk to the people who may have noticed something suspicious, don’t forget to carry a recent photo of your dog. Don’t forget the internet – Spread the word and photos on the web through social media and many websites and forums where you can leave a post describing the incident and contact info.