Frenchie Thefts Caught on Film
Two seperate but eqaully brazen French Bulldog thefts have been caught on film recently.
In North East England, a Durham family’s French Bulldog was stolen from their gated backyard by thieves dressed in hats and dark clothing. The theft, which was caught on their home security system, appeared to be planned in advance by thieves who were familiar with the property.
Video footage of the theft, along with the article, appears here – http://www.sunderlandecho.com/news/2500-dog-stolen-from-home.6516702.jp
There’s also a Facebook group for anyone who might be able to help, or who simply wants to send a mesasge of support.
As someone who has suffered the theft of a dog from within their own home, I can fully relate to how horrific an event this is. You’re left feeling violated and off balance – worried about your missing dog, worried the thieves might return for the rest of your pets. There’s simply no rest and no peace until you know where your dog is. My heart goes out to the McGough/McManus families.
In a different kind of theft, Virginia police are looking for a man who did a ‘snatch and grab’ theft of a pet store puppy from a Virginia Beach pet store. The man had asked to see the puppy, and while an employee was momentarily distracted, the suspect simply walked out of the store, puppy tucked inside his coat. This theft was also caught on security tape.
The store owner says he’s worried about the puppy because it ‘needs shots and veterinary care’. From the look of the puppy I saw on the screen, I hope the theif has a good supply of high test de wormer on hand.
Read more about the theft here, and watch the video.
I can’t give many tips about preventing pet store thefts, but here’s a few things I’ve learned about keeping your dogs safe at home. While some of them may sound like over kill, there’s no such thing as too much preparation if it can keep your dogs safe.
- ALWAYS microchip your dogs. Not only will chips help to bring your dogs home, but in a court case, a microchip number will be an instant identifier that will prove possesion. In our case, because I had the chip number and the chip was registered to me, I didn’t have to do anything else for the police to believe that Ruby was my dog.
- Downplay your dog’s value. When workmen or other random visitors ask about my dog, I denigrate their worth. They aren’t show dogs – they’re all rescues. Altered rescues, with health problems (the expensive kinds of health problems). I never, ever mention showing or breeding, and I have no signage on my property that indicates it, either.
- Hide your dogs from casual street view. Use fencing or hedges, and try to block the view onto your property from casual passersby. People who see a yard full of expensive looking purebreds can get ideas – and having a clear view of your property can allow them to plan out their actions in advance. We use wooden palisade fencing to block the portion of our dog yard that’s visible from the road. If you have a property like the one shown in the photo above, use protective meshing or screening across your gates, to block the view from the street.
- Keep gates locked. Yes, it’s a pain in the ass to have to go an unlock your gates just so you can drive your car on to your property, but this minor deterrant can make the difference between a theft and thief who changes his mind. Ditto locked yard gates – I know of two dogs who were stolen from their side yards, by thieves who simply called them to the gate, opened it, and picked the dog up. Padlock the gate, and remove the dreaded ‘crime of opportunity’.
- Consider getting a big, protective dog. In our case, the only thing that stopped the thieves from taking more of our dogs than just Ruby was our Mastiff, who had access to the entire property. Murfee sounded the alarm, and likely scared the beejesus out of the thief when he realized that she wasn’t locked up for the night. A big, mean looking, scary sounding dog can sometimes be all that you need to give a thief a second thought about lifting one of your dogs. Plus, Frenchies enjoy having large dogs to nap on – they regard them as sort of mobile love seats that snore.
If you have more tips, please feel free to share them. I’d like to be able to stop reading articles about stolen Frenchies – it’s becoming quite the epidemic!
Ooh, ooh, I have a tip on preventing pet store thefts.
DON’T SELL PUPPIES AT YOUR PET STORE.
That is all.
Yeah, I was going to say something in that vein, but I’m working on being a kinder, gentler me. That will last until about Thursday afternoon..
I recommend microchips for the same reason.
Yeah the pet store is probably only annoyed they lost a sale.
If you aren’t into having a big scary dog you can get a sign that says you have a big scary dog. I have one that says “Akitas hate trespassers, final answer”. I think it helps to paint a picture of no tolerance for the idiots that might consider stupid stuff otherwise.
I cannot imagaine the worry of having a stolen dog. One can only hope if they wanted it enough to steal then maybe they will at least take care of the dog.
I hear about people all the time who leave their dogs with outdoor access all day through a doggy door. I always wonder what they are thinking from a safety perspective.
Actually, (raises hand from back row where bad kids hang out), I do have a question for you. Okay, a barrage of them.
I’ve read your account of how Ruby’s microchip ID’d her.
But how did you actually reclaim her? To what extent was the law involved? Did it involve going to court? Was the thief prosecuted? The in-law who *knew* he had received stolen property?
And how did Ruby adjust to coming home?
We were originally contacted via the CKC, who had been contacted by the shelter. By the time I got in touch with the shelter, they had returned Ruby to the in law she had been living with.
I phoned the Oshawa police, explained the situation and gave them the contact info at the shelter and for the CKC. They shelter confirmed the chip they’d found, and the police department in my (former) town gave them the police report on her theft. They then sent an officer with me to the house to get Ruby back. Because I had a scanner, I was able to scan her on the spot and prove that her chip matched the chip ID on the police report and that the CKC had on file for her. The CKC had a note on her file saying “stolen dog”, with the police incident report. That was enough for them to simply hand her over to me, with no questions asked.
Everything that happened after that happened because of that one police officer, who simply refused to let the case drop. The ‘owner’ Ruby had been living with wasn’t charged, but the thief was. He received probation, and he and the girlfriend who had master minded the idea both lost their jobs. Morons.