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How to Prevent Dog Theft

Every year thousands of dogs are lost - many as a result of theft. Even the most reliable and looked after dog can get lost or stolen. The two main reasons for dog theft are:


  • Breeding
  • Ransom

To avoid dog theft


  • Ensure that your dog wears a collar and indentification (ID tag) when in a public place. On the tag, include your surname, address, telephone number and full postcode. If your dog is microchipped, and you have room to write that on the tag, then try and do so.
  • Do not leave your dog unattended in the car or tied up outside a shop.
  • Microchip your dog so that if the ID tag is removed, it is still permanently identifiable.
  • Ensure that your dog does not go out of sight on walks. You should vary your walk times and routes.
  • You should be cautious when you invite people into your home to view dogs or puppies for sale. Restrict the number of visitors and their access. Always have someone with you.
  • Make sure that your dog is neutered as this will reduce the chances of theft for breeding.
  • Make sure that your fencing is adequate and check it regularly for wear and tear. Keep your dog in view when it goes out into the garden.

Micro chipping


The Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (RSPCA) recommends that the best way to make sure a lost or stolen pet is found is to have the pet microchipped.


  • This is a simple injection of a tiny microchip the size of a grain of rice which is painlessly inserted under the animal's skin. The microchip then permanently links the dog to its owner, increasing the chances of them being reunited if the animal is lost, stolen or strays.
  • The microchip contains the owner's details and is put on the national PetLog database.
  • If a lost or stolen microchipped dog is found, this information will be revealed by passing a scanner over the microchip, and allow the dog to be reunited with its owner.
Micro chipping prices vary but a one-off payment of around £20.00 will get your pet on to the PetLog database for life. Owner details can be quickly amended if any details change.

To micro chip your pet


  • Contact your local RSPCA branch or veterinary surgeon for advice.
  • Call Telephone 0870 606 6751 for more information about joining PetLog.
  • Visit the Web Link RSPCA website or call the RSPCA advice line on:
    Telephone 0300 1234 555.