BBC report highlights dog theft

Youths The law and YouA report by the BBC has highlighted the growth in dog theft across the UK.

Using statistics obtained form Police forces around the country, the report identified the huge variation in reporting and the need for tougher sentencing.

The story was picked up by all regional TV news programmes and many of the BBC local radio stations.

Said DogLost spokesperson, Nik Oakley, “The report gave us the opportunity to talk about the growth of dog theft and the impact on owners. We were also able to highlight the fact that statistics demonstrate how police forces react to the crime rather than just the size of the crime.”

DogLost was featured in most of the programmes as well as offering case studies of stolen dogs for both radio and TV.

The story was also picked up by Radio 4’s You and Yours and on 5Live. It also made the headlines on Radio 2 and the BBC News Channel.

Together with Dartford MP, Gareth Johnson, DogLost was able to make the case for the need for tougher sentencing for dog thieves and a specific offence of pet theft.

Cruel hoaxer demands money for missing dogs

police-officersOwners of lost and stolen dogs are being asked to be on their guard for a man demanding money for their return.

Numerous owners have been called by a man who says he has their dog and will harm him if they don’t pay £400 or £500 into a Post Office. Owners who have asked for photographic evidence that he has the dog are faced with aggressive behaviour.

One owner – who asked not to be named – said, “Fortunately I had taken advice from DogLost and I immediately asked for some evidence that he had my dog. Although I had been warned it was a hoax, the caller was very abusive and threatening.”

Like most of the calls that are being made from the withheld number, this owner was told he had 10 minutes to take the money to the Post Office.

Said DogLost Police Coordinator, Jane Frankland “Sometimes he states he knows where owners live, but that’s impossible as only telephone numbers or emails are displayed on websites where the missing dog is listed.”

Unfortunately a number of dog owners have been taken in and police across a number of counties are investigating.

Owners confronted by a person demanding money for the return of their dog should phone the police on 101 immediately.

Anyone with information on the alleged extortionist should contact or call Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111 in complete confidence.


Fear of fines leaves dogs unclaimed

dogscanned01There is evidence that since the introduction of compulsory microchipping at the beginning of the month, more dogs are being left unclaimed.

DogLost coordinators believe that the rise in unclaimed dogs is due to the fear of being fined £500 for not having a dog chipped.

A DogLost spokesperson said: “At this very early stage we think it is highly unlikely that an owner would be fined if they claimed their dog. Dog Wardens will advise owners to get their dog chipped within 21 days and they may subsequently check that.”

“We would urge all owners to claim their dogs and not be in fear of reprisals”

Keeping Your Dog Safe


  • Ensure your dog’s tag contains – owner’s name, postcode, and at least one contact number.
  • Ensure your dog is micro chipped – and that details are up to date.
  • Dog tattoo – a permanent and visible means of identifying your dog. The National Dog Tattoo Register can provide more details.


  • Tie your dog up outside a shop
  • Leave your dog unaccompanied in a car
  • Leave your dog on its own in the garden
  • Give out information about your dog to strangers


  • Use an extending lead if your dog’s recall is poor
  • Vary the time and location of your walks
  • Walk with a friend if you are worried
  • Increase your house security – a crime prevention officer will advise you
  • Consider a GPS tracker collar

Join our team of volunteers

PITP 2 copyDogLost simply wouldn’t be able to provide its unchallenged service to owners without the undying commitment of its volunteer network across the country.

From putting up posters and sharing across social networks to providing valuable advice, amassing intelligence and working with the police and other agencies, our volunteers are committed to helping dogs.

We have a network of volunteer co-ordinators supported by additional volunteers in each area. They are the people who support owners by offering advice, organising searches and where necessary, providing a shoulder to cry on.

DogLost also has a dedicated social media team whose role is to run our 40 or so Facebook groups in conjunction with local teams.

At head office level we have a wide range of volunteers working on anything from administration to fundraising and keeping the vast DogLost operation running smoothly.

Our volunteers receive training and support and will provide you with essential skills to help you get into work or provide a satisfying volunteering experience during retirement.


Current DogLost volunteering opportunities:

Area Volunteers

If you have a love of animals and the desire to help dogs be reunited with their owners then volunteering, as an Area volunteer will be a rewarding challenge. You will probably be the first point of contact for an owner.

Our Area Volunteers have good local knowledge and will be trained in the procedures of finding missing dogs. You will build up a network of contacts such as police stations, kennels, dog wardens, dog walkers etc. It is likely that you are already a DogLost helper.

Reporting to an Area Co-ordinator, you may also need to update dog registration details. You will be party to confidential information and must remember confidentiality at all times.

If you think you have what it takes, please contact

Volunteer co-ordinator

If you have recently retired from a job where you were managing volunteers, then your experience could benefit DogLost.

We have grown to a position where we have more than 120 badged volunteers working in the field and in a variety of functions across administration, fundraising and PR.

If you are someone who can manage the volunteering function, ensure that our volunteers are supported and be responsible for recruiting more people then we would love to hear from you.

Whilst a love of animals would be terrific, organisational and people skills are far more important.

Please send your CV to

PR/press intern

If you are in your last year at university – or have recently left – and want to gain a raft of experience working in a fast moving environment then a three month stint with DogLost will be rewarding and benefit your CV.

You should be able to identify good stories and write them up succinctly for a variety of channels and liaise with the media where necessary.

Working remotely, you will be in daily contact with other members of the DogLost team and there will be opportunities to get involved with fundraising, event planning and product launches.

Knowing a Poodle from a Pomeranian will be a bonus !

Please send your CV to

Social Media Team members

You will live locally and work alongside the Area Co-ordinator and Volunteers in running one of our forty plus Facebook groups.

Ideally you will have been a member of Facebook for a while, but that is not as important as keeping the group up to date and acting as an important link between the website and our membership.

You will be expected to add new members, spot a spammer at 50 paces and get out important DogLost messages from the PR team.

This is an ideal volunteering opportunity for people who may be tied to the house, but enjoy communicating online.

We are also looking for one or two people to join our Twitter team.

If you think you have what it takes, please contact


Microchipping highlighted on GMTV

Debbie Pup AidAs compulsory microchipping is just two days away, Stolen and Missing Pets Alliance colleague, Debbie Matthews, from Vets Get Scanning will be on ITV’s Good Morning Britain tomorrow at 7.40am.

Debbie will be talking about the importance of chipping pets and why the scheme will never benefit missing pets until compulsory scanning by vets, rescues and local authorities becomes law.

Vets Get Scanning campaigns tirelessly for compulsory scanning with their ‪#‎ScanMe‬ campaign, and they have been in some encouraging discussions with the British Veterinary Association.

Pet Theft Awareness Week

Day1-TakeStepsNow in its fourth year, Pet Theft Awareness Week will be promoting the use of technology in helping to prevent pet theft and to find stolen pets.

In particular, dog theft is increasing 14% year on year, and the authorities continue to defy public opinion to introduce stiffer penalties, so prevention awareness is becoming more and more important.

Pet Theft Awareness and DogLost are members of SAMPA, the Stolen and Missing Pet Alliance, and in June 2014 the Alliance submitted a recommendation to the Sentencing Council that a pet be categorised as ‘theft of a pet’ and that there be a difference between an inanimate object and a valued living possession. SAMPA also requested that working within the existing framework, a custodial sentence of a minimum of six weeks could be introduced.

The new Sentencing Council guidelines were introduced on 1stFebruary this year and SAMPA is very disappointed that its recommendations were not accepted and the status quo remains.

Nik Oakley, spokesperson for SAMPA and DogLost said, “In spite of much lobbying, and intervention by Neil Parish MP, past Chair of the All Party Parliamentary Group for Animal Welfare, we were unable to persuade the Justices to accept our point of view. We will continue our fight and were delighted that the matter was brought to the House of Commons last week by Gareth Johnson MP”

Using social media and a series of graphics this week, Pet Theft Awareness will be highlighting the need for pet owners to be vigilant and install some inexpensive but efficient equipment to help keep an eye on their animals.

“While we wait for tougher penalties,”says Richard Jordan of VioVet and co founder of Pet Theft Awareness, “we are urging pet owners to use all the technology that is available to them as the onus remains firmly with them to protect their pets”.

DogLost celebrity supporter appears on Crufts show

Crufts Jill 2DogLost celebrity supporter and former Crufts winner, Jilly, AKA Soletrader Peek a Boo, made a surprise visit to the Crufts final sofa with owner Gavin Robertson and rising star, Annie Mac.

Interviewed by Claire Balding, Gavin Robertson highlighted the contribution of Jilly’s Peek a Boo Trust which has raised some £100,000 for both children’s and dogs’ charities in the last three years.

Some of the money raised benefited DogLost with Jilly’s Jolly Jaunt raising nearly £50,000 with a sponsored walk from Crufts to Great Ormond Street Hospital

The interview accompanied a film showing how a Petit Basset Griffon Vendeen puppy has benefited the children at a junior school on Merseyside.

DogLost congratulated in House of Commons

HOC imagesDogLost has just been congratulated on its work in the area of dog theft by Gareth Johnson MP in the debate called by him in the House of Commons this evening.

Johnson called for tougher sentencing despite the Sentencing Council ignoring the Stolen and Missing Pets Alliance’s representations last year.

Justice Minister, Dominic Raab, for the government, dismissed the calls for separate legislation claiming that both the Theft Act and Animal Welfare Act were sufficient.

A spokesperson for the Stolen and Missing Pets Alliance said that the campaigning would continue.

DogLost celebrates its first year with Essex Police

doglost_web1DogLost celebrated its first year working in partnership with Essex Police with a slice of cake.

The formal partnership has seen some successful results, not least the reuniting of cancer-detecting Monty the English Bull Terrier following a tip-off to DogLost.

The little celebration followed a meeting between the two organisations and local.

The photo shows DogLost’s Essex Co-ordinator, Kim Herbert and Police Co-ordinator Jane Franklin, along with Basildon Dog Warden Sarah Moran, Essex Watch Liaison officer Kevin Blake, Crime Prevention and Partnership Sergeant Tina Pavelin, Jacky Donaghy, Dogs Trust and Essex Watch Liaison Officer Brenda Cross.

DogLost works with a number of police forces around the country with new partnerships expected in the coming months.