Council must cooperate with Gardaí to battle dog thefts – McGuinness

Sinn Féin Councillor Conor D. McGuinness has signalled his concern at a potential increase in dog thefts in recent weeks. McGuinness commended the response of Gardaí and voluntary organisations such as Waterford Animal Welfare for their work in intercepting alleged dog thieves and traffickers. 

McGuinness said:

“I am deeply concerned by what appears to be a prolonged spike in dog thefts over the summer. Dogs Trust Ireland are suggesting this is related to an increase in demend for pets in the wake of the lockdown, and specifically for thoroughbred dogs. 

“I am aware of close cooperation between local authority dog wardens and An Garda Síochána in other counties in an effort to combat the spike in thefts. Waterford Council’s dog control unit has a role to play. The Council should make its resources available to assist Gardaí in recovering stolen pets and reuniting dogs with their families. 

“Gardaí are advising that their statistics do not match the anecdotal evidence coming from voluntary groups, and this could be down to people not reporting thefts to Gardaí. if you believe your dog has been stolen you should immediately report to the Gardaí and to the Council’s dog warden service. You should also inform your vet or local animal welfare group. 

“Prevention is the best cure and I am advising dog owners to be vigilant, especially when their pets are outside. Do not leave dogs unattended in your garden, or tied outside a shop, and keep your dog close to you when walking. Ensure your dogs are microchipped and that your most up-to-date contact details are registered. This will make reuniting a stolen pet easier.”

Dungarvan Garda Station: 058 48 600

Waterford Dog Control: 0761 10 20 20

Waterford Animal Welfare: 087 655 1152