There have been more than 5,000 reported cases of dog theft in England and Wales in the last five years and Justin Madders, MP for Ellesmere Port and Neston, is supporting calls for dog theft to be recognised as a specific crime.
“Dog theft is a particularly nasty crime which causes great distress to the owners and to the dogs themselves.
“It is a rising issue in this country with hundreds of dogs being stolen every year. Too often dogs that are stolen are simply reported as missing and very few are ever returned to their owners.
“At the moment there is no specific crime of dog theft and so, if a case does reach court, a dog which is a family member and well-loved, is treated like any other chattel such as a TV or mobile phone and the sentence is based on monetary value.
“I’m sure that local dog owners will agree with me that this just isn’t right!”