Melbourne couple offer $10k reward for stolen dog: 'We'll do anything'

An unknown man was captured on CCTV approaching the Melbourne home before swiping the dog from the front yard.

The last three days have been a "total nightmare" for Melbourne couple Courtney Beaumont and Lucas Brown whose two-year-old dog was snatched from their front yard on Sunday.

Desperate for the safe and prompt return of Leo, a labrador-French mastiff cross, they've now offered a reward of $10,000.

"He’s our child, we would do anything for him," owner Lucas told Yahoo News Australia on Wednesday. "We just hope they took him for financial gain and can be persuaded to give him back."

Black labrador-French mastiff cross dog Leo.
Two-year-old Leo, a labrador-French mastiff cross, was taken from his Melbourne home on Sunday. Source: Victoria Police

Leo was snatched by an unknown male driving a silver Toyota Kluger. CCTV footage shared by Victoria Police on Monday shows the offender approaching the Brunswick property at around 4.15pm. The man gets out of the car and unlatches the front gate where Leo was, police said. He then walks the animal to his car before driving away.

"We went to the shops for 20 minutes and came back and he was gone," Lucas told Yahoo.

So far "nothing substantial" has come from the couple's generous reward and Leo's whereabouts remain unknown. But it's been "so awful," Courtney told 9 News.

Melbourne couple Melbourne couple Courtney Beaumont and Lucas Brown with dog Leo.
Melbourne couple Courtney Beaumont and Lucas Brown said it's been a 'total nightmare' since Leo was taken from them. Source: Supplied

Police said the vehicle had stolen number plates with the registration TCD849. Senior Constable Jessie Coletti said "there was definitely a possibility he was scoping out the property".

Rise in dog thefts across Australia

The incident is the latest in a string of dog thefts of late with suggestions that pets are being stolen and sold on the market for a profit.

Earlier this year, a Perth woman made an emotional plea for her dogs' safe return after two King Charles Cavalier Spaniels were stolen from her home in broad daylight.

CCTV footage showing man steal dog from Melbourne home.
CCTV captured a man in a silver Toyota Kluger approaching the Brunswick home before walking away with the dog. Source: Victoria Police

A French bulldog was also taken from a Perth home in March, but was later returned. Meanwhile, a french bulldog puppy was snatched from a pet shop in front of staff in Sydney's Eastgardens shopping centre last month.

Most French bulldogs cost between $3,500 and $5,000 in Australia, but depending on their colour, can cost much more. The surging demand for French bulldogs and the fact that they could "sell for pricey sums," is something thieves would be aware of, PETA spokesperson Laura Weyman-Jones recently told Yahoo News Australia

Do you have a story tip? Email:

You can also follow us on Facebook, Instagram, TikTok and Twitter and download the Yahoo News app from the App Store or Google Play.