Newton Tracey woman fears her dogs have been targeted by thieves

Charmaine Speed with the 'tag' she found on her front gate in Newton Tracey.

Charmaine Speed with the 'tag' she found on her front gate in Newton Tracey. - Credit: Archant

Charmaine Speed discovered a blue ‘tag’ on her front gate after her daughter spotted three people acting suspiciously outside her house.

The blue 'tag' Charmaine Speed found on her front gate.

The blue 'tag' Charmaine Speed found on her front gate. - Credit: Archant

A WOMAN from Newton Tracey is worried her dogs have been targeted by theives after her young daughter caught three strangers walking around her back garden on Sunday evening.

Charmaine Speed with her two dogs Trixie and Belle, who she describes as being part of the family.

Charmaine Speed with her two dogs Trixie and Belle, who she describes as being part of the family. - Credit: Archant

Charmaine Speed, 30, said the two men and one woman were wandering around her land in Newton Tracey, peering through the windows of her house.

The mother-of-four then discovered a piece of card sprayed blue had been attached to her garden gate and the next day the same people returned to her house.

“They were stood in my mother-in-law’s garden by my gate discussing something and when I saw them, they ran away,” said Mrs Speed.


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“I am sure it was the dogs they were after and I feel like the tag was a marker for something.

“I’ve been too scared to let the dogs out since as I have read about people tagging houses which have dogs and stealing them for bait in fights.

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“The dogs are normally in and out, but now I feel I have to watch them; I hardly slept the night after my daughter told me what she had seen.”

Mrs Speed contacted the police about the ordeal, and also posted a warning message on Facebook which has attracted nearly 1,500 shares and more than 100 comments.

She believes her two pure breed collies Trixie and Belle, who are working dogs, were being targeted.

Matt Laval, 30, a chef from Barnstaple, commented on Mrs Speed’s post saying he believed someone had tried to steal his two Siberian huskie dogs on Saturday.

“They were in the garden with the gate locked and no gaps in the fences; it was completely secure,” he told the Gazette.

“My mother, who was looking after them turned away for five minutes and when she looked back they were gone and it appeared as if the gate had been forced open.

“Luckily we found them again and I have reported the matter to the police.”

Both Mrs Speed and Mr Laval were told the local beat team or PCSOs would get in touch with them, but they have heard nothing back.

A spokesman for Devon and Cornwall Police said the matter had been passed on to the local beat team, who would speak to Mrs Speed in due course.

He said: “There are no cases of dog thefts that we have been made aware of in the area.

“We would always encourage anyone who notices any suspicious vehicles or people to contact the police.”

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