23 July 2005

In name of the feather, give us our Joey back...

Belfast Telegraph

Pet shop's plea to thieves over stolen cockatoo

By Lisa Smyth
23 July 2005

THE heartbroken owner of a £1,000 cockatoo stolen from a Limavady pet shop last night appealed for the thieves to return the "larger-than-life" bird.

All that remains of Joey is a feather left behind when he was stolen - along with two rockpebblers worth £120 each - during a burglary at The Pet Shop on Thursday night.

Proprietor Val Greenwood said she's been distraught since her beloved pet was taken and has appealed for his safe return.

The talkative cockatoo has been a firm favourite in the shop since he arrived 13 years ago.

Assistant manageress Laura Smith explained: "Joey could say all sorts - he would ask you how you were doing and he would even say 'give us a kiss'.

"Adults and children love him - people would even come in just to see him when they didn't have anything to buy.

"We are all distraught - we have had him so long and we are really worried about what sort of condition he is in.

"It looks as though the thieves tried to put him in a cage but he wouldn't fit. There is a big black bin we keep cat food in and it has been taken, so I assume they just shoved him in there.

"He is bound to be really upset. I doubt very much he will talk as he is so upset. He'd a collar on to stop him picking at his feathers. If the thieves remove that he could hurt himself.

"And we are worried in case they hurt him as the only person he wouldn't bite the fingers off is Val - I feed him and clean his cage every morning and he even snaps at me, so we are terrified they might get angry with him."

She added Joey was a "larger-than-life" character and everyone was desperate to have him returned, or at the very least know that he is safe and being looked after.

The shop has appealed to other pet shops across the province to remain vigilant and contact police if they are approached in relation to buying either a cockatoo or rockpebblers.

If you can help police with their inquiries, telephone 028 77 766797.

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