A FAMILY is appealing for the safe return of a rare breed of dog that was snatched from outside their Wirral home this week.

"Shadow", a Siberian Husky, was last seen by owner Dawn Stirling at the family home in Cedar Avenue, Bebington, on Tuesday afternoon.

Appeal posters were put up around the village and a member of the public got in touch to say he had seen the two-year-old being bundled into the back of a car.

Shadow is short-haired with a dark grey back, white legs, white chest and has a shaved patch on his front left leg. He has also been fitted with a chip and was recently neutered.

Merseyside Police confirmed they are investigating the disappearance.

Mrs Stirling told the Globe: "Shadow’s disappearance has caused great distress and we hope someone out there can help us find him. We've got another Husky, who is really missing Shadow.

"We were contacted by a man who saw a guy bundling Shadow into the back of a car.

"He said he he didn’t realise what was going on at the time. If he had, he would have done something to help.

"We don’t know where Shadow is. Is the person preparing dogs for fighting? We don’t know.

"If he’s been locked up he will howl like crazy, so anyone living nearby will hear.

"When my dog got out, my mum was putting some rubbish in the bin. We think what's happened is that he's come back to the front of the house and has been grabbed."

A Merseyside Police statement said: "Police were called to Cedar Avenue at about 8.20pm following a report that a man was seen forcing a husky dog into the back of his car earlier that day at 1pm.

"He was driving a blue car and drove off in the direction of Yew Tree Road.

"An investigation into the incident is ongoing and police are speaking with neighbours.

"Anyone with information is asked to call Merseyside Police on the 101 number."