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Putin wants sat-nav for his dog

RUSSIAN PRESIDENT Vladimir Putin is taking a high-profile stand against dog theft and wants a sat-nav dog collar to keep track of his pet Labrador, according to the country's deputy prime minister.

Vladimir Putin"When can I get a system for my dog, Connie, so she can't go too far astray?" Mr Putin is said to have asked Deputy Prime Minister Sergey Ivanov. Mr Ivanov was presenting the president with plans for launching three new navigation satellites. He said the collars would be in the shops in Russia from July 2008.

The Russian rocket Proton-K was due to launch the three new satellites into orbit on Christmas Day to facilitate Russia's GLONASS navigation system. They will bring to 18 the total number of satellites mapping Russian territory. Ultimately it is planned to have 24 satellites in orbit from 2009.

The Glonass system was developed by the Russian army in the 1980s, in competition with the US GPS network and the European Galileo system. And now it can help track down missing and stolen dogs!

OUR DOGS Chief reporter and President of Dog Theft Action Nick Mays commented: ‘DTA recommends that dog owners use every possible means of identifying and keeping track of their dogs to protect them against theft as well as straying.

‘Over the past couple of years, DTA has been approached by several companies who are developing sat-nav dog collars. Some of these seem more effective than others, but they’re certainly worth considering as a means to track a missing dog. I’m delighted to see that no less a dog owner than President Putin is looking to obtain a collar for his own dog Connie. It sends a good message to millions of other dog owners to remain vigilant for their dogs and to protect them from loss and possible theft.’