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Old 04-08-2009, 09:21 PM   #1
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Default [News] Dog-gone Low Economy Causes Rise in Dognapping

Dog-gone Low Economy Causes Rise in Dognapping - PawFun

Dog-gone Low Economy Causes Rise in Dognapping

Blame it on the economy, which makes the reward money for beloved family pets attractive to those down on their luck. Or blame it on careless owners whose dogs get stolen when tied up outside of stores, left in cars “just for a second,” or left in backyards alone.

Dognapping is on the rise, MSNBC reports. Toy breeds, puppies, and purebred dogs that look expensive or unusual are most vulnerable, says an American Kennel Club spokesperson. Among the most-stolen breeds tracked by the AKC in 2008 are Yorkshire terriers, poodles, Pomeranians, shih tzu, bulldogs, corgis, a Norwich terrier and a mastiff.

While some dogs are targeted for stealing, most dog thefts are crimes of opportunity. “The average guy doesn’t wake up in the morning and think about stealing a dog for a family member or himself, but the dog is there, there’s no one watching, and they take him,” says Lt. John Kerwick, president of the U.S. Police Canine Association, Region 7, New York, an organization of officers who work with police dogs.

How to Protect Your Dog From Theft


Don’t leave your dog alone in your yard for long periods, especially if it’s visible from the street.

If strangers approach you with admiring comments about your dog, don’t share information about his cost or where you live.

Report a theft to police and animal control as soon as it happens.

Keep a current photo of your pet so you can make flyers or posters immediately and post the photo on Web sites.

If possible, hold back some kind of descriptive information about your pet so you can sort out crank calls from serious ones.

Microchip your dogs and cats, and keep microchip registration information up to date so shelters and veterinarians can contact you if your pet is found.

A microchip also serves as proof that an animal belongs to you.

Get your dog a Together Tag. Developed by Dogster and the American Red Cross, Together Tag will allows you to make a Lost Dog poster immediately from any computer if your dog is missing, because current photos and contact information will already be online.

A tattoo on the inner thigh is a permanent way of identifying your dog if the tattoo is registered with a tracking organization such as National Dog Registry.

Consider GPS for your pet. New GPS collars allow owners to set up a safety zone. If the pet strays beyond it, an alert goes out e-mail and text message. The collars have potential for tracking missing dogs, but they’re expensive at $129.99 and up, and they can be removed by someone who finds the dog and decides to keep it.
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Old 04-08-2009, 10:17 PM   #2
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So scary...I was walking Mimi & Momo today & some guy in his car slowed down. Kept staring at them...I just walked back to my street right away, didn't go home...just kept walking until he drove away. They are microchipped & I never leave them out in the yard unattened. I'm scared to even walk them now!
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Old 04-09-2009, 07:18 AM   #3
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Wow, minimomo, that does sound pretty scary. I would be freaked out had that happened to me as well.
I myself live in a very rural area in a small, but nice mobile home park. There is another yorkie besides Molly, a shih tzu, boston terrier and a jack russell that I know of. Their owners also walk their dogs as well as basically keep them indoors with pee pads, crates and x-pens.
I do have a tethered leash for Molly outside in the yard; but she is out there on it only if I am out there with her. Even though in the 12 years I've lived here and during that time I've never had anything stolen, I still wouldn't leave Molly unattended. You just never know.
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Old 04-09-2009, 08:29 AM   #4
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I have had that walking fear before - but I don't know if I am just hyper-sensative to it from being on YT. It has been almost 2 yrs ago when I remember a gal from Calif. on YT posting about her mom out walking with the YTers puppy was knocked down by a passenger who jumped out of a truck - he scooped up the puppy and off they went. That image is burned in my head.
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Old 04-09-2009, 10:24 AM   #5
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Remember the gal in southern CA. who raises Yorkies, put an ad in the paper and had two men come to see puppies, only to have one pull a gun, keep the family members at bay while the other guy put all the pups including an adult Yorkies in a lawn and leaf bag and take off. She had just had a camera installed and caught the whole thing on tape. The police caught the guys and all but one puppy was returned. Don't know if they ever found the last puppy.
I use to walk the girls every day, but now they go on a tredmill unless my husband can walk with me. I don't even take them on the bike unless he's with me. I also carry pepper spray on my wrist. Isn't it sad how we all have to live!! When I was growing up, we never even locked our doors.
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Old 04-11-2009, 06:23 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by mimimomo View Post
So scary...I was walking Mimi & Momo today & some guy in his car slowed down. Kept staring at them...I just walked back to my street right away, didn't go home...just kept walking until he drove away. They are microchipped & I never leave them out in the yard unattened. I'm scared to even walk them now!
You could tell if this guy was acting creepy, but sometimes I think we get too paranoid based on what we read on line. Yes, there is a very small, cruel minority of sociopaths out there who would steal anything, including a beloved pet, and not feel the least bit sorry for their actions, but I really think they are a tiny minority.

People stop to see my yorkies all the time; they often slow down to get a better look at them. I have even had folks stop their cars to chat about how much they like 'em (at which time Gatsby usually gets into attack mode and they think twice). I assume its because they think they are cute (or they are awful good actors). Yorkies are so terribly adorable can you blame them? Maybe in your case, the guy was just too shy or socially inept to say anything?
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Old 04-11-2009, 08:35 PM   #7
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Yes, I'll admit that I can be paranoid sometimes, esp when it comes to Mimi & Momo. He could have been looking for a road or house & happen to see Mimi & Momo, or could've been just checking them out. He creeped me out tho...he didn't make any eye contact w/me nor was he smiling, just staring at my babies.
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Old 04-11-2009, 08:47 PM   #8
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It's just so sad what people are resorting to these days, stealing dogs from other people. That just completely breaks my heart and scares me to death. I'm so paranoid when I have to leave Sasha at home, even when someone's home with her. Just last week, there was a report in the newspaper of a woman's yorkie that was stolen from her yard in my subdivision. It just broke my heart. I never leave Sasha in the yard alone as it is, but just thinking that you can't even go for a walk without having to worry who's gonna come up to you is just so sad.
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Old 04-12-2009, 06:47 AM   #9
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It's just so sad what people are resorting to these days, stealing dogs from other people. That just completely breaks my heart and scares me to death. I'm so paranoid when I have to leave Sasha at home, even when someone's home with her. Just last week, there was a report in the newspaper of a woman's yorkie that was stolen from her yard in my subdivision. It just broke my heart. I never leave Sasha in the yard alone as it is, but just thinking that you can't even go for a walk without having to worry who's gonna come up to you is just so sad.
I totally agree with you about not leaving your little dog in a yard unattended. Its not just criminals, but predators you have to watch out for, and of course, they are great little escape artists and I have seen one neighbor's yorkie actually climb their chain link fence to greet me and my crew when we were walking by. I later warned the owner, who claimed that the dog had also dug a hole under the fence, but not to worry they had filled it in.

But taking your pets for a walk and leaving them unattended in your yard are two very different levels of risk. I will always do the former and have for the last 15 years, but would never to the latter. Dogs love to do for walks; it’s in their DNA. Incidentally, I think the biggest risk we take when walking our guys, is the potential for escape and getting hit by a car. Please ALWAYS double check the harness to be sure its totally secure. A young pup will take off after a squirrel or bird, and you had better be sure that harness is in good shape and properly attached.
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Old 04-16-2009, 06:47 AM   #10
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Teddi got a microchip because of this. I hope we never have to use it though!

Teddi always has his walks unless it's raining, snowing, or it's dark outside. I don't even think anyone would be smart enough to try to take him-- he'll go berserk and bite their head off (or the nearest body part)
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Old 05-06-2009, 08:54 AM   #11
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Animal Smiley 049 treat them as your children

a safe way to be is to ask yourself the way you treat your children is the way you treat the animals you love and depend on you. never ever leave them out of your sight, dont talk to strangers....and please dont go to a place to buy that believes in mass-production for sales-pet stores, you go to a place where you know the parents and there is fair treatment.....time to be safe is now
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Old 05-06-2009, 09:07 AM   #12
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My aunt had her bichon stolen from her while she was on vacation, a few weeks later the mail man brought him back and he wanted a reward, which my aunt happily gave him. The whole family was so happy to get him back, as he was really like my aunts kid, but he was shaved and really scared, he also became a little aggressive towards strangers. He was the sweetest little guy and someone stole that away. I am generally a trusting person, so stories like the OP make me remember that it's not that safe out there.
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Old 05-21-2009, 10:03 AM   #13
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Thanks for the great advice. I haven't been thinking about this aspect of the equation, when people stop by to pet princess Lulu and start asking me a bunch of questions (and this happens very often). I'll be more aware now.
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Old 05-21-2009, 10:34 AM   #14
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So scary!! I never leave mine unattended outside and don't really walk them as Pixie hates to go on walks and Roxie isn't real good on the leash. if I do take them, my dtr goes with because with 3 I couldn't grab all at once if needed.
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Old 05-21-2009, 03:58 PM   #15
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I was just noticing today on my local radio station (on a FSOT block) that there were about 5 ads for missing dogs, which is pretty strange in my small rural town. They were all purebred dogs....which really makes me think they weren't so much missing...more like stolen It is really sad that someone would steal a family pet, which in most cases are really more like stealing a member of the family.

I remember when my husband and I got our first dog shortly after we were married, he told me I could never have a real baby, because I was too paranoid about our furbaby...well since then I have had children, and am really just as overprotective of my children as I am my dog, they are both my family so why wouldn't I be? My children are never out of my sight and neither is my dog.
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