Chihuahua: the most stolen dog breed

In 2019, 338 dogs were reported stolen, two fewer than in 2018, according to the dog database dogID.

The most popular breed among thieves was the chihuahua, according to Flemish minister for animal welfare Ben Weyts (N-VA), in response to a parliamentary question from Emily Talpe (Open VLD). He also informed parliament that 181 of the dogs reported stolen were later reunited with their humans.

The chihuahua, named after the Mexican province where the breed was thought to originate, was the most popular among thieves, perhaps because it is small in stature and easy to steal, as well as being in demand among city dwellers.

In second place came the American Staffordshire terrier, which few would consider easy to steal. At number three was the Malinois, another breed not easily seen as docile.

The top ten is completed by the keeshond or Dutch barge dog; the Yorkshire terrier, indelibly allied with the well-dressed elderly lady; the French bulldog; the German shepherd; the Siberian husky; the cross-bred mutt; and in tenth place the Jack Russell terrier.

Meanwhile, Weyts has intervened in a matter that has all of Flanders on tenterhooks: the matter of the kitten Lee and the death sentence pronounced by the federal food safety agency.