There is nothing scarier than the realization that someone has stolen your dog. The first thought that crosses is your mind is “Why? What are they doing to him?” Rarely do you assume that you dog is being well-loved by the thieves, and you would be right. Dogs are stolen for ransoms, resale, medical research, breeding, fighting, torture, and for use as bait dogs to name a few horrifying facts. In honor of Last Chance For Animal’s (LCA) National Pet Theft Awareness Day (February 14), here are a few ways you can help prevent your dog from being stolen.
#1 – Keep ‘em on leash
A dog that is attached to you on leash is safe and secure. It’s easy for someone to scoop up a loose dog. One attached to your wrist or waist? Not as easy.
#2 – Have proper fencing
Make sure your backyard has a sturdy fence that is tall enough that someone can’t reach over and pick up smaller dogs. Gates should have a lock on them.
#3 – Don’t leave unattended in yard
Unattended dogs in the yard are a target for thieves, especially at night. Make sure you keep an eye on your pet.
#4 – Don’t disclose value
While it’s common knowledge some breeds are sold at high prices, don’t go around telling people how much you paid for your dog. This can attract a pet thief’s attention, especially if they are looking for a ransom or a breeding dog.
#5 – Alter your dog
Dogs that are altered (spayed/neutered) won’t be targets for pet thieves looking for breeding dogs. For dog breeds commonly used for fighting, it may save them from being a target for the ring too.
#6 – Don’t leave them visible
If you are gone all day for work, it’s best if you can have your dogs in a part of the house where they can’t be seen from the street. If you have a doggie door to an outdoor run, make sure it’s as safe and secure as possible, with high fencing and locks.
#7 – Don’t leave outside a store or restaurant
LCA makes a great point about this one. People do it all the time and dogs get stolen frequently! Don’t tie your dog up outside a restaurant or store. If you don’t have someone with you do hold your dog, don’t go in, or leave your dog at home.
#8 – Don’t leave unattended in the car
Another tip from LCA is to not leave your pet in your car unattended. It’s easy for thieves to break into your car to steal your dog, and it does happen.