Article by Libby McBride: Callous thieves broke into a Billericay home, stole three tiny French bulldog puppies and allegedly attacked their mother as she tried to defend her young.
Owner Priscilla Love had only left her house, on Oak Road, for four hours when burglars smashed the window and got in through the kitchen to take the six-week-old dogs between 12pm and 4pm on Sunday afternoon (February 19).
"Me and my mum had literally been gone for about four hours from start to finish," the 33-year-old, who breeds dogs as a hobby, explained.
"When we came home, we had been broken into and the puppies had been stolen. Their mum was sitting there shaking. I don't know what happened. I think whoever took the puppies had kicked her and beaten her because she would have tried to stop them. She's been crying all night."
Priscilla said the litter is not yet ready to leave their mum, three-year-old French Bulldog, Rabbit.
"They're still suckling and are not yet fully weaned. One of the puppies is a little bit timid. She's quite shy. To get her to eat, you have to hand feed her. It takes about half an hour for her to have a couple of mouthfuls. She must have missed three or four feeds now."
The puppies are so young, they haven't even been named yet
Priscilla is still sorting through her home to see if the brazen burglars stole anything else.
"We're in the process of having the house re-plastered because we had a flood so at the moment it's just a shell. They did go through my wardrobes and clothes after they smashed a window and came through the kitchen door. I'm just going through everything to see if anything else is missing."
She claimed that the break-in and disappearance of the puppies has left her devastated.
"I'm absolutely heartbroken. I can't believe it happened," Priscilla added. I can't believe someone would come into my home and do what they have done. Their mum is absolutely devastated and terrified. She's not even barking. Even when I re-home puppies, I do it one at a time, so this is very distressing for her."
When it comes to rehoming, Priscilla always makes sure she finds owners through the kennel club website.
"I wasn't in any rush to find them new homes. I did have a litter last year and one puppy was seven months old before I found the right home because I don't just let them go to anybody."
Essex Police have been approached for comment. Anyone with information should call 101
Article by Libby McBride, Essex Live