9:04am Thursday 3rd January 2013
By Peter Magill
A SEVEN-month-old puppy has been stolen from an East Lancashire animal rescue centre — after a would-be owner was allowed to take it for a brief walk.
Police are hunting missing Magso, a lurcher dog which was taken from Bleakholt Animal Sanctuary in Bury Old Road, Edenfield.
The thief left a car key with sanctuary staff as a deposit — but when he failed to return a short time later they became suspicious.
It emerged that the key was a fake and Magso has not been seen since.
Pc Annie-Marie Kelly said: “This is a particularly callous crime.
“If the thief wanted a dog either for himself or his family for Christmas, then it would have been fairly simple to work with the sanctuary to ensure the dog was suitably chipped, had all his vaccinations and would have been comfortable in his new surroundings.
“As it is, he has torn this young puppy away from the sanctuary without seeking the proper advice and, as a result, it is Magso himself who is now at risk.
“If the thief is so without conscience to simply steal a dog, what is to say he will not get bored of this young puppy and dump him now that Christmas is over?”
The theft actually took place on December 14, at around 12.10pm, but details have only just been released by police at Ramsbottom.
Pc Kelly added: “The sanctuary does a fantastic job looking after unwanted animals or pets who, for a number of reasons, need a loving, caring home.
“Thieves like this not only put the animals at risk but also deprive genuine families of giving these animals a second chance in life.”
People who may know of Magso’s whereabouts are asked to call police on 101 or Crimestoppers, in confidence, on 0800 555 111.
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