Recently, there’s been more and more articles and opinions that say dog theft is on the rise. And, fortunately, they seem to be supported by quite a bit of evidence, so that we can actually take a deeper look at the issue.
Overall, the numbers clearly say that dog theft has been on the rise since 2012. A lot of it is attributed to celebrities promoting their “designer dogs” and thus bumping the prices of some dog breeds into 4-digit sums. And that rise of theft cases isn’t just in the U.S. – it happens in the UK and Europe as well.
Most major sources of dog theft data are insurance companies. One such firm is Direct Lin. Their latest to publish figures from England and Wales show that 121 more dogs were stolen in 2017 than the year before that. Last year, almost 2,000 cases were reported to the police.
Similar numbers are raised by police departments, animal rescues, shelters and charities, and other insurance firms like Insurance Emporium.
The Blue Cross, for example, has been sharing similar data since 2010 and has been actively helping dog owners protect their four-legged pals.
Blue Cross’s Louise Lee said that it’s “impossible to say why there was a drop and worryingly now a rise in crimes involving pet theft”.
She added: “Perhaps more forces are better at recording this sort of data or more owners feel like they can come forward and report their pet as stolen, not just missing.”
Blue Cross aren’t the only ones sharing this thought.
An Insurance Emporium spokesperson said: “Dog thefts are rising due to more accurate reporting of crime statistics by regional forces, we think.
“This means the public are able to get a more fair reflection of the problem of dog theft.”
Another factor in this equation is that the number of dogs owned by households is also increasing, so it’s normal for the number of stolen dogs to increase with them.
In the UK, the five dog breeds that were stolen most often in 2017 are:
- Staffordshire bull terrier
- French bulldog
- Jack Russell
All in all, while the statistics show that dog thefts are becoming more numerous, they aren’t too much out of line compared to what you’d expect. After all, households dogs are increasing in numbers, and people are more active in sharing and reporting dog thefts. Still, another data that carries meaning is that more “designer dog” breeds are being targeted compared to other breeds. With that in mind, regardless of whether dog theft is on the rise or it’s all just statistics, you should take good care of your pooches.
Maybe the best piece of advice you can follow is to not get a dog that’s from the same breed of a movie star’s dog?