How common is pet theft, and what can be done to combat it?

How common is pet theft, and what can be done to combat it?

Even though no pet owner wants to think about their beloved animal being stolen, it is a crime that is becoming more common and happens far too often. It is thought that tens of thousands of pets are stolen every year in the United States alone.

Someone could steal your pet from your house, yard, pet store, park, or even while it's tied up outside of a business while its owner runs an errand. Most of the time, dogs are stolen as pets, but cats, rare birds, and other pets are also taken. Purebred dogs and dogs of very high value are often stolen so they can be sold again. However, mixed breed dogs are also stolen for bad reasons, like dog fights or puppy mills.

Besides the mental pain of having a pet stolen, pet owners have to pay a lot of money to replace their pets. Pet owners can easily spend thousands of dollars trying to find their lost pet. They may print a lot of posters, offer rewards, hire pet detectives, and take time off work to look.

Then what can be done to stop and fight this horrible crime? People who own dogs should first take safety measures, like getting microchipped, walking their pets on leashes, and never leaving their pets alone in the yard or tied. If you have to leave your pet outside of a store or cafe for a short time, lockable dog leashes, collars, and harnesses from Safely Secured can also help keep it safe from thieves.

Besides taking steps to avoid stealing pets yourself, the police need the right tools and training to put pet theft cases at the top of their list. A lot of police departments are busy, so they may take a while to react to cases of pet theft. If an owner's pet is stolen across state or county lines, they may also have to deal with problems like who has control.

In the end, stricter laws and harsher punishments for pet theft are needed across the country to properly punish and prevent thieves who cause families a lot of stress. Pet theft is a felony in some states, but most of the country doesn't have a uniform, strict policy. Pet theft should be considered a major crime instead of simple theft because it involves living animals, say supporters.

Communities can also set up better ways to find lost pets and bring them back together, such as digital spots where people can report sightings, government shelters that look for lost pets, and closing down loopholes that thieves use to sell pets online.

Pet theft can be very bad, so stopping it, making sure it's punished, and making sure the law recognizes how bad the crime is are all important parts of the fight against this horrible act.

Back to blog

Leave a comment

Please note, comments need to be approved before they are published.