Rutland resident fears thief is targeting valuable dogs

Cheyenne Clower is worried someone is stealing pricey pooches after her dog, Bain, and several other purebreds have gone missing lately.

While most of Kelowna spent the last seconds of Dec. 31, 2012 celebrating the New Year, Cheyenne Clower was frantically searching north Rutland for Bain: Her American Blue Nose Pitbull.

Bain went missing at 6 a.m. that morning, which Clower said is extremely uncharacteristic of her dog.

“He’s not a wanderer,” said Clower.

“He doesn’t like the cold. He goes out the door and practically lifts his leg the minute he hits the snow, then he’s doing a circle and coming back in.”

Clower said her purebred dog is worth a lot of money, but that’s not why she wants him back.

“He’s like my son…I don’t care about his value, I care about him. I want him home in case somebody tries to hurt him. I don’t want him being made into a mean dog.”

Hours after Bain went missing, Clower began to post lost dog notices on several local websites.

Upon scanning the websites to see if her pet had been found, she noticed several other valuable dogs had gone missing or been stolen since November.

“I found all sorts of high-end, purebred dogs that are missing…I’ve talked to a couple of the other ladies who are owners of the animals and they’ve been searching like crazy and they can’t find them.”

Suzanne Pugh, manager of the BC SPCA Kelowna branch, said although it is possible there is dog thief nabbing pricey pets, the local BC SPCA branch currently doesn’t have any evidence to support that theory.

“It hasn’t made it to the branch as being a trend that we see, so at this stage I would suggest it’s maybe more of an isolated incident.”

She added the best thing owners can do to give themselves the best odds of being reunited with their pets is utilizing the pet identification program.

“Any pets that have identification, either a microchip or a tattoo, we’re able to reunite them back to their families much quicker.”