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American Kennel Club: Dog theft on the rise

"Thieves are always lurking. They're always lurking and they're always looking," said Brandi Hunter, Vice President of Public Relations and Communications for AKC.

MICHIGAN, USA — A few weeks ago, 10 French bulldog puppies that were stolen from Ohio were recovered in Ottawa County.

RELATED: 'Those poor puppies': Humane Society, sheriff react to theft of 10 French bulldogs in Ottawa County

Now, we talk one-on-one with the American Kennel Club (AKC) to find out more about this increasing problem across the entire country.

According to the AKC, French bulldogs are in high demand, and with the increased interest, theft of them has also been increasing.

"The uptick has been concerning," said Brandi Hunter, Vice President of Public Relations and Communications for AKC. "It has been concerning because it's a great breed and because families are being ripped away from their pet."

Hunter says they are able to track these types of thefts through their microchip and reporting database.

"In smaller breeds, you will see an uptick in theft because unfortunately people are greedy, and it's a lot harder to steal a Doberman than a French bulldog."

Hunter said a variety of factors contribute to why there's a focus on stealing French bulldogs and other breeds like it.    

"Bulldogs don't have large litters. They're not like a lab that can have seven, eight, nine puppies at once," Hunter said. "So when you're seeing a breed that only has two, possibly three puppies, it's a little bit different and the demand far outweighs the supply."

Plus, these pups don't come at a small price.

"They go from anywhere between $3,000 to $10,000 depending on who you're dealing with, depending on if the dog came from a champion line," said Hunter.

Hunter adds that theft is common when breeds increase in popularity.  

"The demand, the supply, the cost, all of these things lead to a snowball of greed that we really wish we didn't see, but unfortunately we do," she said.

But this doesn't just affect purebred or popular breeds. Hunter said no matter what kind of dog you have, it's important to microchip them and stay cautious. 

"Thieves are always lurking," she said. "They're always lurking and they're always looking."

The American Kennel Club recommends not walking your dog alone late at night, and being aware of what you post online.

With any social media safety, it's important not to put too many identifying factors out to the public.

"We just really encourage people to think just a little bit about what could go wrong," Hunter said. 

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