Heartless thieves are now arranging for dog microchips to be removed from stolen family pets, gardaí have confirmed.
They have reunited a stolen springer spaniel with her owners in Midleton, Co Cork, after she was found in Britain.
Ruby was stolen from her kennel in the greater Midleton area and reported missing last June. She was recovered before Christmas in poor health and with her microchip removed.
A Facebook post about the theft was viewed by nearly 100,000 people and was spotted by an eagle-eyed lady in Britain who made contact after she saw Ruby put up for sale on a website in that country.
With the assistance of Avon and Somerset Police, Ruby was recovered and made the 500km journey, via Rosslare, back to Midleton in time for Christmas.
Ruby’s owners, Bernard and Liz Ahern, said: “We are absolutely thrilled to have Ruby back home. We are so grateful to the lady who spotted Ruby for sale, the Somerset Police, and our gardaí here in Midleton.”
Superintendent of the Midleton District, Adrian Gamble said: “We appeal to all pet owners to take all extra security precautions, and ensure their pets are microchipped.”
The investigation into Ruby’s theft is ongoing.