A CHARITY that cares for abandoned dogs is reeling after the theft of more than £100-worth of donated food.

The shed used by Save Needy Dogs in Swindon, was broken into and large sacks of specialised dog food were stolen.

Jessie Bascombe, one of the founders and trustees of SN Dogs discovered the theft yesterday. She said: “I just want to cry because at the end of the day this has been kindly donated by members of the public. Their money has been stolen really.”

She found the broken lock at around noon when she went to put in some more food. “We were going in to take some tins that had been collected from Drove Vets when we saw that it had been pried off.”

The thieves had cherry-picked the unopened bags of more expensive and specialist food – 20kg bags of Autarky, Field and Trial for working dogs, Barking Heads and Burgess Sensitive for dogs who more delicate digestive systems.

Open bags of food, small, bags and tins were ignored.

“We often get smaller bags donated and open bags, but these bags are like gold dust to us for dogs who can`t handle changing food too often,” she said.

Jessie explained the 8ft by 6ft shed on the driveway of her home in Pinehurst was only used to store dog food and a trolley.

“I haven’t had to lock it in the past and it’s never been a problem,” she said. “I decided to put a lock on it quite recently because I thought I should and within a week someone has prised off the lock and stolen food.”

She believed at least four bags and probably closer to eight had been taken, with some of the sacks of specialised food worth around £50 each.

“These were complete bags. They were there to help us out when we have a dry spell and we are short of donations.”

People have already begun to rally round on social media. Tina Armour posted on Facebook: “To take from a charity is the lowest of the low. I'll get a couple of bags when I go shopping in the morning, and leave them at Vets Klinic for you to collect.”

Michaela Johnston offered: “I’ve a big bag of dry natural food for sensitive tums you can have.”

Dog food donations can be made at Vets Klinic in Bridgemead, Drove Vets at Wroughton or Eastcott Vets in Old Town.

Visit.sndogs.uk for more information on how to donate online.