TWO families are devastated after the theft of their dogs.

The loss of her two terrier bitches has resulted in elderly care professional, Elaine Booty, of Hovingham, spending hundreds of pounds in advertising and poster production in the hope of finding them after they disappeared two months ago from a field at her smallholding in the village.

Six-year-old Tinker and three-year-old Hemp were mother and daughter Patterdale-cross dogs.

“They are inseparable,” said Elaine. “They were playing in the field, but only 15 minutes later they were gone.”

Neighbours, farmers and scores of residents in the Hovingham area have been helping her search.

“They are much-loved family pets,” said Elaine who also has three German shepherd dogs.

As part of her search, she has contacted all vets within 70 miles of Hovingham, as well as RSPCA branches in the district while friends have highlighted her plight on Facebook.

“I’m never going to give up hunting for them because they mean so much to us,” said Elaine who runs her own business, Easi-Care.

Meanwhile, a family in neighbouring Farlington have become the victims of dog thieves.

Amber, a ruddy-red-coloured labrador bitch, was inseparable from her twin, Max, said Richard Singleton, of Farlington Grange, but disappeared two weeks ago. The two dogs were last seen playing together.

The family has combed fields and alerted farmers and residents through posters.

Shop owners and publicans have also been displaying posters.

Six-month-old Amber was expected to be trained as a gun dog.

The disappearance of the dogs has raised fears that they may have been be taken for breeding or to be used as bait in dog fights.

Anyone with information about the three dogs is asked to phone Elaine on 01653 628781 or 07790 099519, or Richard on 01347 878402.