A family has put up a £20,000 reward to help find their ‘stolen’ dachshunds.The dogs vanished two weeks ago when they failed to return home from a field neighbouring the family home in Nether Silton, North Yorkshire. Mum Ruth Benson, 30, spent five days searching for Pippin and Purdey, even using a thermal heat camera at night, but has found nothing. Her daughters Ruby, eight, and Poppy, five, would sleep with the pets by their side every night, and were left devastated by their disappearance.
Ruth said: ‘They’ve just vanished, not a sight even in the village or anywhere. I’ve not slept since it’s just awful, I feel sick constantly.
‘Until this happens to you or someone close you will never know the pain it causes.
‘Pet theft is becoming a soaring crime and the police need to step up in protecting us and our faithful family members.’Ruby is particularly devastated by the disappearance of her best friend Purdey, who helped her through a long stay in hospital for a burst appendix.
No, it’s not just to make themselves look adorable. Dogs curl up in a ball when they sleep due to an age-old instinct to keep themselves warm and protect their abdomen and vital organs from predators.
Ruth said: ‘Purdey is her world and it hurts me even more knowing how much that hurts her and I can’t give her the consoling answers she needs.’
Despite search parties scouring the surrounding villages and putting posters up all over the area, the family have no clue what happened to them.
Ruth added: ‘The price increase for puppies in the last year has rocketed making breeding extremely profitable. This is why we suspect the dogs have been stolen.’
The wider family have pulled together to raise £15,000 in reward money, topped up by a further £5,000 from a generous member of the dachshund-owner community on Facebook.
Ruth said: ‘It doesn’t even touch what they’re worth to us. The pain of not knowing where our babies are will never leave until we find them and I will never give up.
‘Somebody, somewhere must know something. I beg anyone who can help with any information to please get in touch.’
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Here’s looking at you. Dogs have three eyelids, an upper lid, a lower lid and the third lid, called a nictitating membrane or “haw,” which helps keep the eye moist and protected.
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