Reunited Amber’s family speak out on Dog Theft:-
As I’ve been asked to explain the story of Amber, I have to advise the alleged stories are conflicting.
- It’s confirmed by the man who took Amber, that on Friday, 6th March 20 at 12.47 he got on the 65 bus from Petersham Road, Richmond and travelled 21 stops to Kingston with her. The time it took from finding her to putting her on that bus was just 8 minutes. What happens after this is unconfirmed and conflicting between the woman who then took her (the keeper) and the man (the taker).
- He alleges that on arriving in Kingston he bumped into the woman. He told her he had just found her and that the woman offered to take the dog, name her Lady and that she had a garden. She then walked off with Amber over her shoulder towards the High Street. He had taken her details but unfortunately had subsequently lost them.
- She alleges that Amber was sold to her. That she was told Amber had been following him for weeks.
- On 13th March, seven days after Amber went missing, we were contacted by him to tell us what had happened and the guilt he felt. By this time we had postered most of the local area and social media was kicking in, we had put on Facebook a reward and crucially that TFL were helping us with CCTV on the buses.
- On 23rd March we were contacted by the friend of the woman who had Amber, claiming to know her whereabouts and that she had seen a reward on social media, also she had seen the medical needs of Amber. Amber was getting ill. After numerous calls ‘the Keeper’ contacted us.
When he was asked why he took her and gave her away he replied ‘ he’d never had a dog, he didn’t know what to do’. This is a local man, in his 60s and is known to have lived on the streets for many years.
When she was asked why the delay in contacting us she replied ‘due to personal illness and the murder of a neighbour’.
When you find a pet you have a choice:
- Take the animal to the vet.
- To the police
- To an animal shelter
- To the closest house, secure them and then call either of the above.
They had a choice, but for whatever heinous reason they delayed doing the right thing. So it was social media and all our sharing that took their choices away. They simply couldn’t keep her. In the beginning locally and as the net reached our further nationwide. Every detail about her was out there, the reward was set to incentivise, people were engaging and searching across continents to find her. We had made her too hot to handle.
So Amber has been to the vets, the effect on her health of the last 2.5 weeks are as follows
- 0.7kg of weight loss.
- Heart murmur further worsened.
- Infection to the left ear.
- Swollen anal glands due to poor diet (expressed by vet).
- Swollen throat glands which are hindering her swallowing.
In a months time she should fully recover. This morning she is quiet and couldn’t finish her walk but I know she will bounce back (picture in the garden today and at the vets).
So thank you. Without social media and you doing the right thing, that simple act of sharing, I know we would never have got Amber back. We will never know which share it was, to whom and when but it reached out and it brought our dog back home. We can’t thank you enough. That spirit of human kindness may it never stop and may it stamp out or at least deter anyone ever doing this again. Please keep sharing any dog loss, theft or abuse.
I would not wish the last two weeks on anyone, especially Amber. Dog theft is a crime.
#PetTheftReform debate in Parliament after the Covid19 pandemic is under control. In the meantime there’s another petition to sign:- https://petition.parliament.uk/petitions/300071
Also it would be beneficial if it was compulsory to scan and check microchips to reunite stolen dogs and cats, please sign this petition too:- https://petition.parliament.uk/petitions/300010