Police reassure attempt to steal walker's dog was isolated incident
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Police have offered reassurance that an incident which saw two men approach a dog walker and attempt to steal his pet was isolated, with no further reports received.
Dyfed-Powys Police officers are aware of increased concerns in the Llanelli area following a report of the attempted theft of a dog along the Millennium Coastal Path near Bynea, Carmarthenshire.
Officers are reassuring that while the incident was extremely worrying for the dog owner involved, and is being investigated, there have been no further reports of walkers being approached in this manner.
Chief Inspector Shaun Bowen said: “We are aware that news of this incident has been shared widely on social media, and is causing a high level of concern among dog owners in Llanelli and the surrounding area, some of whom are now fearful of walking their pets.
“While there has been increased reporting around the issue of dog thefts in the media recently, the majority of these have centred around the thefts of dogs and puppies from breeders, and there has been no threat of harm to the dog owners.
“The incident in Bynea is at present isolated in terms of an individual being targeted while walking their dog, and we have received no further reports.
“We urge people to continue to take their usual safety measures while not reacting out of fear, but please do report any incidents or suspicious behaviour to us so we can continue to monitor the situation and build a bigger picture.”
The force received a report at around lunchtime on Friday, February 5 that a dog walker had been approached by two men near the Bynea nature reserve.
He reported that the men picked his dog up, making threats if he tried to take his pet back. Following a scuffle, the victim got hold of his dog and immediately reported the incident to police. Officers carried out a search of the area, but the men were no longer present and there was no information available about any vehicles the men might have travelled in to carry out enquiries.
The men were described as one being in his 40s, around 6ft tall, of stocky build, and wearing light blue jeans and a dark puffer jacket, and the other in his 20s, around 5ft 6in tall, and wearing similar clothing.
Llwynhendy Neighbourhood Policing Team has carried out additional patrols along the Millennium Coastal Path from Bynea in the days following the report, offering advice to dog owners over keeping their pets safe.
Walkers are advised to use well-known paths where there are likely to be other people around, to walk their pets in daylight, carry a mobile phone, and let someone know where they are going and how long they are likely to be out.
In the case of an incident occurring, never react in a way that could risk your own personal safety, but contact police immediately by calling 999.
In a non-urgent situation, you can report to police in one of the following ways: