French bulldog theft is on the rise. Why are thieves targeting this breed?

It’s an uncomfortable truth that instances of dog theft have increased during lockdown and it seems that, in particular, instances of French bulldog theft are on the rise. While it is something that could conceivably happen to any dog owner with any breed, it seems owners of French bulldogs should be especially alert to the dangers of dog theft.

In February two French bulldogs belonging to entertainer and singer, Lady Gaga, were snatched in a violent attack that saw her dog walker shot and hospitalized. Thankfully, they were eventually found safe and sound after a $500,000 was offered, but there isn’t always this kind of happy ending. And as Brandi Hunter, Vice President of Public Relations and Communications at the American Kennel Club said recently to CNN, there’s a reason why this wasn’t an isolated occurrence. 

"Smaller breeds are more appealing for theft, and French bulldogs are wildly popular right now. The demand for the breed is higher than the supply so they are often a more targeted breed."

The smaller size of French bulldogs doesn’t help. Rarely going beyond a foot in height and thus weighing relatively little, it’s relatively easy for thieves to snatch them and run.

Hunter went on in the article to point out more factors that make French bulldogs more susceptible to being stolen. Being so in demand as the latest ‘it’ breed, they can fetch fees up to as much as $5,000 each. Moreover, if they haven’t been spayed or neutered then they can be used to breed.

As always, however, there are things you can do to reduce the risk of your own French bulldog being stolen:

  • Microchip them, so that if they are lost or stolen, they can be more easily identified as yours if found
  • Spay or neuter them, so they won’t be used to breed
  • Be vigilant. Keep an eye on them at all times
  • Monitor your own use of social media. Be careful not to advertise them to thieves
  • Buy and use an anti-theft dog lead
Steve Wright

Steve writes and proofreads buying guides, news stories and advice for Pets Radar, drawing on his lifelong experience as a pet owner. Currently sharing his house with two cats and a dog, he draws on the many highs and occasional lows of pet ownership he has borne witness to in his writing. He has worked in publishing for 15 years as an editor, sub editor and writer on a range of titles, such as SciFiNow, How It Works, All About History, Real Crime and Horrorville. You can follow him on Twitter @stevewright22