National Pet Theft Awareness Day – Feb.14
Pet theft is on the rise, with an alarming increase in incidents involving dogs. The American Kennel Club says millions of dogs are stolen every year and most of the time never recovered. And last year, thefts were up 40%, the group says.
About half of all thefts occur in the home, stolen either from the yard or from inside the house. About 15% are nabbed while the dog is being walked, and about another 15% from dogs left alone at a store or in a car.
This troubling trend has left many pet owners feeling anxious and concerned for the safety of their beloved companions. Dog theft is a lucrative business, driven by the demand for certain breeds and the value that can be obtained through illegal sales, breeding, and even ransom. As a responsible pet owner, it is crucial to be aware of the risks and take steps to protect your furry friend.
The Growing Problem of Dog Theft
The alarming rise in dog theft is a growing problem that pet owners need to be aware of. This troubling trend is driven by various factors, including the high demand for certain breeds, the potential financial gain through illegal sales and breeding, and even the possibility of ransom.
The tactics used by these thieves are often sophisticated and well-planned. They may target homes, parks, or even unsuspecting pet owners on the street. Dogs are taken quickly and discreetly, making it difficult for owners to react in time.
Warning Signs and Precautions for Pet Owners
One of the most common tactics employed by dog thieves is targeting certain breeds that are in high demand and are expensive. Be aware of the popularity of your dog’s breed and take extra precautions if necessary. Keep in mind that theft can happen anywhere, whether at your home, in a park, or even while you are out for a walk. Stay vigilant and don’t let your guard down.
Most Sought Out Dogs for Thieves:
- Yorkshire Terrier
- Boston Terrier
- French Bulldog
- American Pit Bull Terrier
- German Shepherd
- Labrador Retriever
- Siberian Husky
- Shih Tzu
- Staffordshire Bull Terrier
To protect your pet, ensure that they are always properly supervised. Avoid leaving them unattended in public spaces or tying them up outside a shop, as this presents an easy opportunity for thieves. Additionally, consider keeping your dog’s breed and personal information private, especially on social media platforms, as it can help deter potential thieves who may be scouting for potential targets.
Investing in a high-quality collar with identification tags is crucial. Ensure that your contact information is up-to-date and visible, as this increases the chances of a safe return if your dog ever goes missing. Microchipping your pet is another great precautionary measure, as it provides a permanent form of identification that cannot be tampered with or removed.
There are also electronic trackers like Halo Collar 3, YIP Smart Tag, Ring Pet Tag, Pet GPS Tracker, SpotOn GPS Dog Fence and others. Many are expensive, but then if your pet came with a high price tag, it may be worth it.