The most frequently stolen pets in Merton have been revealed.

A Freedom of Information request submitted by the Wimbledon Times details how since the beginning of 2014, more pet dogs have been reported stolen to the police than any other animal.

In total, 12 pooches have been nabbed in that time frame with mammals (9), rodents (8), cats (5) and reptile (2) following close behind.

Astoundingly though, more than half of the 36 total thefts came in a single calender year.

But the Met police were unable to clarify what caused the sudden spike in 2015 which saw eight mammal, four dogs and 5 rodents taken.

A Met spokesman said: "If you think you have been the victim of a theft then report it to police as soon as possible."

Dr Samantha Gaines, head of the RSPCA's companion animals department, echoed those sentiments.

"It’s heartbreaking for people when the pets they love like members of their family are stolen," she said.

"Putting in place a few measures can help prevent your pet from being stolen or becoming a target.

"Ensuring pets are wearing collars with up-to-date ID tags and having them microchipped can help in the battle against pet-nappers."