AN ATTEMPTED dog theft on the Isle of Wight has prompted police to urge all dog owners to keep their dogs safe.
The Japanese Akita was in the garden of a house on St Thomas' Street, Ryde last week when a group of men tried to encourage it into the back of a van, before the owner disturbed them.
Sgt Mark Lyth from West Wight Safer Neighbourhood and Isle of Wight Country Watch, said: "We had a report on January 8, that a black, hand-painted, Transit-sized panel van was involved in the attempted theft.
"They were described as white male, 25 to 30 years of age, dressed in dark clothing."
There have been a few dog thefts on the mainland, but Sgt Lyth is keen to stress that currently no dogs have been stolen on the Isle of Wight, but that owners should be vigilant and make sure their dogs are safe.
He said: "We would ask owners to make sure their dogs are collared and micro-chipped, in secure gardens, that gates are locked, they they know where their dogs are at all times.
"It tends to be the larger type of dog targeted like the Akita, German Shepherds, and Rottweilers."
Isle of Wight officers are in touch with the mainland and Sgt Lyth said they would keep people updated though Twitter and other social media.
He said: "If you get anyone coming into your property or onto your land, then call us on 101, or email Country Watch on firstname.lastname@example.org"