Police issue statement over picture of ‘docked ears’ after dogs stolen at gunpoint in Sheffield
South Yorkshire Police has responded to calls for the owner of three dogs stolen at gunpoint to be prosecuted over the docked ears of two of his pups.
The pups – two Cane Corsos and one Rottweiler – were stolen when their owner was ambushed at gunpoint when he turned up at a pre-arranged location in Burngreave to meet a man he had been communicating with online over the sale of the pups.
He took four pups altogether but had a gun pointed at him through his car window by one man while a gang of three others stole the dogs.
One of the pups was dropped as the crooks made their getaway.
Last week detectives issued an appeal for information about the ambush and released a photograph of the Cane Corsos, which had cropped ears.
The practice is illegal in the UK and the photograph triggered a large number of complaints, with calls for the owner to be prosecuted.
But South Yorkshire Police confirmed today that enquiries have been carried out and the pups’ ears were docked abroad, before their owner bought them.
In a statement, the force said: “In terms of the ears being docked, the dogs weren’t bred in this country.
“The victim of the robbery imported them, legally, to sell, and the dogs already had their ears docked so there is nothing to answer.”
The pups were stolen at around 3pm on Monday, February 22
One of the thieves was Asian, slim and aged in his late twenties.
He was wearing a long, black, knee-length jacket and a black beanie hat.
Another was white, slim but muscular with blond hair and a Scottish, Irish or northern accent.
He was wearing a blue Nike tracksuit.
No arrests have yet been made.
On the same day, four other puppies were stolen in a knifepoint robbery in a flat on Smelter Wood Road, Richmond.
The pups were a Mastiff/ Cane Corso mixed breed and have not yet been traced.
Anyone with information about with of the thefts should call South Yorkshire Police on 101 or Crimestoppers, anonymously, on 0800 555111.