The devastated owner of a puppy who was stolen at knifepoint has said she was the victim of a cruel prank in which she was told her dog would be beheaded unless she paid £1,000.
Six-month-old Waffle was taken while out on a morning walk on the 23rd of December in the Belmont Road area of St Austell, Cornwall.
Owner Cathryn Hussain was approached by a male holding what she believed to be a knife.
He is described as being around 5ft 8in and was wearing a black, hooded top and scarf, and spoke with a foreign accent.
Speaking to Cornwall Live, Ms Hussain said: “We’re all just a bit fed up of the prank calls that all seem to go through to my daughter’s phone.
“We received a text from someone saying they wanted £1,000 or Waffle would be beheaded. Police have traced the person, who was a female and not from Cornwall.
“How dare someone use Waffle’s disappearance to try and make money?
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“There was also another text from someone saying their ex stole my dog, followed by another message saying they’d actually bought him.”
A week on from the theft, Waffle has not been found.
Ms Hussain’s daughter has set up a Facebook page called Bring Waffle Home for people to post possible sightings.
A Plymouth businessman, who wished not to be named, has also offered a reward for the return of the dog and £250 for information leading to conviction, according to Cornwall Live.
He said he has got dogs himself and that the theft is “sickening” to think of.
“I can’t even imagine what the family are going through,” he said.
Anyone with information is urged to call police on 101, or email firstname.lastname@example.org, quoting log number 0116 231219.
Information can also be passed anonymously to independent charity Crimestoppers by calling 0800 555111, or via www.crimestoppers-uk.org