Kate Middleton and Prince William's choice of dog, cocker spaniel Lupo has reportedly caused a “sparking” rise in dog thefts of the breed according to a new report.
Last year around 3,500 dogs were stolen, an increase of 17 percent according to The Telegraph, with the biggest rise in thefts being the cocker spaniel, the same breed chosen by the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge.
The royal couple adopted the adorable puppy in January last year when Kate turned 30 and was said to be a comfort to the Duchess while Prince William was posted overseas for six weeks last Spring in his capacity of an RAF Search and Rescue pilot. It is believed gangs are now operating in the UK specifically targeting dogs, with thefts from kennels, outhouses and even while owners are walking their pets.
Gavin And Stacey star Sheridan Smith has been one victim of dognapping, who saw her Pei, Enid stolen twice last year from her London home. Luckily she managed to get it back on both occasions but others haven't been so lucky.
Kate Middleton watches the polo with the lovely Lupo (WENN)
The Mirror claims, four cocker spaniels were stolen from owners during a 24 hour period in December in the Hampshire area.
Kate is known to be incredibly fond of Lupo and has taken him along to quite a few events over the past year. When the couple went to a wedding last May, Lupo went with them, staying in the B&B.
He was spotted again at a polo match last summer with Kate and William, where the Prince couldn't resist a cuddle with the pup. Kate even brought him along to a charity bazaar at the Burlington Arcade in Mayfair last December, where according to The Mirror he was chomping down on sausages.
An onlooker revealed: “He was eating sausages, and anything that got dropped he was sniffing up.”