Dog Theft Awareness Day



The Stolen And Missing Pets Alliance’s (SAMPA) Dog Theft Awareness Day is in it’s third year, an annual event held on 14th March.

Prevention and Advice is top of the agenda while explaining why we need tougher laws to act as a deterrent to protect all our pets.

No one is safe from this crime, which hits families, the elderly and the disabled. The loss of a companion and family member is devastating.

With dog theft on the rise it’s a salutary reminder to all pet owners that no one is exempt from this vile crime. FOI figures from the police reveal 5-6 dogs are stolen everyday in England and Wales. This is just the tip of the iceberg as figures for ‘Theft By Finding’ are never included. In reality Doglost say more than 60 dogs are snatched every week.

Dogs are stolen from gardens, houses, parks, kennels, outside shops and cars. Nowhere is safe. Any breed is stolen but designer toy breeds and gun dogs are particular targets. Thieves even steal litters of puppies!

Reward or ransom for return can be demanded but most dogs are sold on to unsuspecting new owners, with some being used for breeding and worse dog fighting.

The Dog Microchip Regulations were only instigated to save money on stray dog kennelling and sadly the microchip system fails to help missing pets get home. Although it is compulsory to microchip our dogs it is optional for the veterinary profession to check pet and owner match, even though they state it is best practice as a recommendation, this loophole remains.

Last year, SAMPA Patron Dr Daniel Allen’s Pet Theft Petition was asking for ‘pet theft to be reclassified as a crime in its own right’ it reached 100,000 signatures in just four months, this illustrates the strength of feeling on the issue.

After meetings with MPs recently it has been decided that ANOTHER petition should be started to support the Pet (Theft) Bill. You can sign on this link:-

We need the Government to act now to protect our pets.

A change in the law is necessary to deliver justice for victims of pet theft as well as to work as a deterrent.

The draft Pet (Theft) Bill was prepared by SAMPA legal adviser Professor John Cooper QC and has been proposed by MP Ross Thomson which awaits its 2nd Reading in Parliament, this will create a new, separate criminal offence in its own right, recognising the self-evident fact that the theft of a living, sentient being is in a whole different category to the theft of an inanimate object:-


Don’t leave your dog outside a shop or supermarket

Don’t let your dog out of sight during exercise

Don’t leave a dog unattended in a vehicle

Make sure your garden, house and outside kennels are secure.

Check gates, lighting and think about CCTV

Be careful who can see your pet’s photos on social media

Change your routine regularly


Always have the following information in your mobile phone:

A clear photo of your pet, showing any distinguishing markings

Your pet’s microchip number

Local Animal Warden’s phone number

Your vet’s phone number

Your dog’s microchip database phone number.

Check your contact details are correct and up to date and flag as missing.

Make sure your details cannot be changed without your permission

Contact DogLost (01633 673859 or email

Use social media

Poster, poster and poster again.

March 14th is #DogTheftAwarenessDay

SAMPA’s legal adviser Professor John Cooper QC explains his draft Pet (Theft) Bill sponsored by MP Ross Thomson who is waiting for a 2nd Reading date in Parliament :-



52% of dogs are stolen from gardens.

19% of dogs are stolen in house burglaries

16% of dogs are stolen while on a walk

7% of dogs are stolen while being tied up outside shops

5% of dogs are stolen from cars


#pettheftreform #theftbyfinding #scanme #checkthatchip

March 14th is #DogTheftAwarenessDay

March 19th is #StolenHorseDay

March 21st #MissingCatDay

We are proud to add the National Animal Welfare Trust as a supporter:- National Animal Welfare Trust (NAWT) has become the first animal welfare charity to support the #pettheft petition launched by the Stolen and Missing Pet Alliance (SAMPA).

SAMPA wants to lobby Parliament to change the way animal theft crimes are reported and punished, in recognition of the importance pets play in our family lives.

Read More:-

Pet Theft Awareness:-

Our pets are categorised as ‘property’/ ‘personal items’ in law which explains why Pet Theft is on the increase. The punishment does not fit the crime and this is why we need the Government to Reclassify the theft of a pet to a specific crime in its own right.

List of supporting MPs

Gareth Johnson MP for Dartford, Kent. Conservative 

Sir David Amess MP for Southend West, Essex.  Conservative

Paula Sherriff MP for Dewsbury, West Yorkshire.  Labour.

Rt Hon Iain Duncan Smith MP for Chingford & Woodford Green, NE London. Conservative

Sir Henry Bellingham MP for North West Norfolk, East Anglia.  Conservative 

Jonathan Reynolds MP for Stalybridge and Hyde, Labour (Co-op)

Antoinette Sandbach MP for Eddisbury, Cheshire.  Conservative.

Stephen Gethins MP for North East Fife, Scotland. Scottish National Party 

Rt Hon Mark Tami MP for Alyn and Deeside, Scotland. Labour

Rt Hon Dr Julian Lewis MP for New Forest East, Hampshire.  Conservative

Douglas Ross MP for Moray, Scotland.  Conservative

Kevin Foster MP for Torbay, Devon.  Conservative

Julian Knight MP for Solihull, West Midlands.  Conservative

Brendon O’Hara MP for Argyll and Bute, Scotland.  Scottish National Party

Yvonne Fovargue MP for Makersfield, Greater Manchester.  Labour 

Rt Hon Sir Mike Penning MP for Hemel Hempstead, Hertfordshire.  Conservative 

Mike Hill MP for Hartlepool, County Durham. Labour 

Henry Smith MP for Crawley, West Sussex.  Conservative

Lloyd Russell-Moyle MP for Brighton, Kemptown, East Sussex. Labour (Co-op)

Alex Chalk MP for Cheltenham, Gloucestershire.  Conservative 

Giles Watling MP for Clacton, Essex.  Conservative 

List of MPs who supported the Pet Theft Debate 2 July 2018 

Chaired by Mike Hill MP

Gareth Johnson MP

Ross Thomson MP for Aberdeen South, Scotland.  Conservative

John Howell MP for Henley, Oxfordshire. Conservative

Simon Hart MP for Carmarthen West & South Pembrokeshire. Conservative

Andrew Rosindell MP for Romford, East London. Conservative

Bob Stewart MP for Beckenham, London.  Conservative

Mr Ian Liddell-Grainger MP for Bridgwater & West Somerset.  Conservative

Jim Cunningham MP for Coventry South,  West Midlands.  Labour

Sue Hayman MP for Workington, Cumbria.  Labour 

George Freeman MP for Mid Norfolk, East Anglia. Conservative 

Henry Smith MP

Yvonne Forargue MP

Dr Lisa Cameron MP for East Kilbride, Strathaven & Lesmahagow, Scotland. SNP

Giles Watling MP

MPs attending the drop-in 2nd July 2018 

Rt Hon Andrew Mitchell MP for Sutton Coldfield, West Midlands.  Conservative

Rt Hon David Hanson MP for Delyn, North Wales. Labour 

Sandy Martin MP for Ipswich, Suffolk. Labour

Luke Pollard MP for Plymouth, Sutton and Devonport.  Labour (Co-op) 

Sir David Amess MP

Alex Sobel MP for Leeds North West.  Labour (Co-op)

Mohammad Yasmin  MP for Bedford, Bedfordshire. Labour

Julie Cooper MP for Burnley, Lancashire.  Labour

Neil Parish MP for Tiverton & Honiton, Devon.  Conservative 

Jo Platt MP for Leigh, Greater Manchester.  Labour (Co-op) 

Dog Theft Awareness Day drop-in 14th March 2017

Sponsored by Gareth Johnson MP

Dame Cheryl Gilham MP for Chesham & Amersham, Buckinghamshire. Conservative

James Morris MP for Halesowen & Rowley Regis, West Midlands. Conservative 

Lord Trees. (Didn’t sign) 

Luke Hall MP 

Rt Hon Sir Desmond Swayne MP for New Forest West, Hampshire.  Conservative

Helen Grant MP for Maidstone & The Weald, Kent.  Conservative

Sir Mike Penning MP

Rosie Cooper MP for West Lancashire.   Labour

Rt Hon Sir Roger Gale MP for North Thanet, Kent.  Conservative

Rt Hon Steven Barclay MP for North East Cambridgeshire. Conservative 

Andrew Rosindell MP

Sir David Amess MP

Mark Spencer MP for Sherwood, Nottingham.  Conservative

Bill Esterson MP for Sefton Central, Merseyside. Labour

Scott Mann MP for North Cornwall.  Conservative 

Christina Rees MP for Neath, Wales.  Labour (Co-op)

Dr Matthew Offord MP for Hendon, London. Conservative 

Gavin Robinson MP for Belfast East, Northern Ireland. Democratic Unionist Party 

Geraint Davies MP for Swansea West, Wales. Labour (Co-op)

John Stevenson MP for Carlisle, Cumbria.  Conservative. 

Rt Hon. Gavin Williamson MP  Chief Whip (Not allowed to sign) (Minister) 

Rt Hon Philip Dunne MP for Ludlow, Shropshire.  Conservative

Liz Saville Roberts MP for Dwyfor Meirionnydd, Wales.  Plaid Cymru

Sir Paul Beresford MP for Mole Valley, Surrey.   Conservative

Fiona Bruce MP for Congleton, Cheshire East.  Conservative

Kate Green MP for Stretford & Urmston, Manchester.  Labour 

Simon Hart MP

Justin Madders MP for Ellesmere Port & Neston, Cheshire West.  Labour 

David Morris MP for Morecambe & Lunesdale, Lancashire.  Conservative

Rishi Sunak MP for Richmond, Yorkshire. Conservative

Craig Tracey MP for North Warwickshire.  Conservative

Craig Mackinlay MP for South Thanet, Kent.  Conservative

Edward Argar MP for Charnwood, Leicestershire.  Conservative

Andrew Bridgen MP for North West Leicestershire.  Conservative

Mary Glindon MP for North Tyneside.  Labour

Chris Davies MP for Brecon & Radnorshire, Wales.  Conservative

Rt Hon John Spellar MP for Warley, West Midlands. Labour

Kerry McCarthy MP for Bristol East.   Labour