Twenty-eight dogs were reported stolen in Hertfordshire last year, a Freedom of Information request has revealed.

Searches conducted on the crime recording system at Hertfordshire Constabulary showed dogs of various breeds had been stolen in the county.

The top breeds of dog stolen were the French bull dog and the Staffordshire bull terrier, with three of each stolen last year.

In addition, two German Shepherds and two bull dogs were reported also stolen. 

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One English bull terrier, Jack Russell terrier, labrador, poodle, shar-pei, whippet, and Yorkshire terrier had also been reported stolen. 

Out of the 28 dogs, 11 of the dog's breeds were not stated. 

The FOI data does not state how many of the 28 stolen dogs were found and returned to their owner.

An RSPCA spokesperson said: “Dog theft is devastating for owners as dogs are much-loved members of the family.

“We’d urge all dog owners to take extra precautions to protect their pooches from thieves by neutering their pets, ensuring they are microchipped with up-to-date contact details registered and ensuring they wear a collar with contact details embroidered or an engraved ID tag.

"We’d also advise that owners never leave their pets tied up outside shops or alone in cars, ensure their gardens are secure with gates locked, and ensure their pet has a good recall and doesn’t stray too far when off-lead on walks."

“Anyone who suspects their dog may have been stolen should immediately alert police, contact their microchip company to register their pet as stolen and inform local rescue groups, vets, dog walkers and neighbours.”


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A Hertfordshire Constabulary spokesperson said: “While dog thefts in Hertfordshire remained relatively low in 2022, there has been growing concerns over the theft of dogs from homes and breeder's kennels nationwide over the last few years.

“If you think your dog has been stolen you can report a crime online or call 101.

“Please be ready to give us as much information as you can, including a name, microchip number, description, when you last saw them, what happened when they disappeared, details of anyone who may have access to your dog and descriptions of people or vehicles seen acting suspiciously in the area."