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Dog owner desperate to find her pet's stolen ashes

Laura with her much-loved dog Matty in happier times. Credit: Laura Peskin

A pet owner is appealing for the ashes of her dog Matty to be returned after the van they were in was stolen in Gloucestershire.

Laura Peskin had been caring for the little Lhasa Apso for two years, after his original owner passed away suddenly. Matty became blind soon afterwards and has had a number of health problems.

This video shows Matty enjoying life with a special 'halo' to help him get around.

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Sadly 11-year-old Matty's condition worsened and on 19 July he was rushed to the vets where he had to be put down.

Owner Laura wanted to keep his ashes in his memory and so had his remains taken to a specialist pet crematorium. They were put into an casket ready to be returned to her. Sadly they never arrived.

I really feel tonight that I’ve let my little boy down I feel so sad. I desperately need Matty’s ashes back here with me where they belong so I can get closure.

– Laura Peskin

Matty's ashes are not the only ones to go missing. The white Ford Transit van contained a number of caskets, which were being collected from Lime Kiln Pet Crematorium in Stroud, and were due to be returned to owners back in Buckinghamshire.

The van had been parked outside the driver's house in The Sunground in Avening near Tetbury. It was stolen at around 1am on Thursday 26th July.

Laura has set up a Facebook page following the theft. Credit: Laura Peskin

It is unclear how many pet owners have been affected by the theft but Laura believes there could be at least a dozen.

Laura is raising awareness on her Facebook page, which now has 400 followers, to ‘prevent this ever happening again’.

She is calling for people to look out for the stolen ashes, saying the boxes may have the names Charlie, Billy or Matty on them.

Please could dog walkers, ramblers and anyone on holiday in the area and in the adjoining counties look out while walking in the woods and check the undergrowth and sides of road for any discarded white boxes in opaque wrapping with green paperwork attached or a large plastic storage container. Anyone who sees a dumped white transit van (original registration VA65 VBF) is asked to report your findings to your local police station.

– Laura Peskin