A DOG owner from County Cork has warned pet owners to be vigilant after she nearly lost her dogs to a man pretending to be a dog warden.
Ashling Willis, from Kanturk, took to Facebook to warn people of what could possibly be a team of fraudsters targeting dogs in the lead-up to Christmas.
In the post, Ashling described how a man claiming to be a dog warden tried to take her dogs as he claimed they didn't have licenses, but Ashling, who is an animal behaviourist, knew this wasn't true.
As the bogus warden tried to take the dogs from the garden and put them in a van which had its license plate covered, Ashling demanded to see ID. First claiming he had forgotten it, the man then sped off as the Cork woman threatened to call Gardaí.
Referencing a similar incident in the Cork area recently, she warned people that the county may be being targeted by a team of dog thieves.
Later speaking on Cork radio's Cork Today Show, Ashling went into further detail about the incident, saying she was in her house when her dogs, who were in the front garden, began barking.
When she went outside to investigate, Ashling discovered a green van with its back doors open and the man who calimed to be a warden attempting to 'seize' the dogs as they did not have licenses, and that he would return them once the matter was resolved.
The man is described as being in his 50s with curly grey hair, a Tipperary accent and 'piercing blue eyes'.
Everyone is urged to remain vigilant and to always demand ID from anyone claiming to be a dog warden.