Dog theft on the rise across the country

Golden Retriever dog, tied to a tree and waiting for its owner, the view from the cafe window

Never tie your dog up outside shops. - Credit: Getty Images/iStockphoto

Unsurprisingly, I’m not a huge fan of Lady Gaga and usually try everything I can to avoid her ‘music’ and all news about her, however recently she has been omnipresent in the news and I subsequently discovered that we do actually have one thing in common – a shared love of dogs.

Recently, she went through every dog lover’s worse nightmare – having her pets stolen.

For those who missed the story, Lady Gaga’s dog walker, Ryan Fischer, was actually shot while walking the star’s three French Bulldogs – two of which were then stolen in the armed robbery. 

Controversially, the singer put up a 'no questions asked' $500,000 reward for their safe return. 

A number of folk weighed in, probably quite correctly, saying that such a move will give a green light to dog snatchers around the world.

I do, however have great sympathy for what she did.

As a lad, I lost a treasured miniature longhaired Dachshund who, having chased and followed a rabbit down a hole, never returned.

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Losing a pet, whether it’s lost or stolen, is a completely shattering experience and I know that If I had the financial means to get my pets back, I would probably do exactly the same thing – wrong though it may well be. 

Gaga’s dog theft happened in Hollywood, a million miles away from our life in Torbay but dog theft is on the rise across the country and the possibility of it, is something we sadly all must be aware of. 

There are a number of things we can do to avoid experiencing the heartbreak of dog theft. 

Not many people nowadays tie their pets up outside shops – but for me, this is now a big no-no. 

Another thing every dog should have is a collar with a tag with your name and address on it but never put your dog’s name on it. 

Take clear photographs of your dog from various different angles – making note of any distinguishing features – as this will help if you ever have to prove ownership.

Remember, many stolen dogs are sold on – creating a proof of ownership nightmare. 

For further helpful tips, go to bluecross.org.uk