Rich Londoners are spending thousands of pounds on guard dogs in a bid to deter robbers.
One company which sells trained German and Belgian shepherds and doberman dogs, says business has rocketed five-fold this year as fears intensify of a surge in attacks on wealthy homes during the recession. A trained German shepherd costs from £5,000, while a doberman can cost up to £10,000.
With the most exclusive streets in London located in Westminster, Kensington and Chelsea and Hammersmith and Fulham, Charles Wall founder of A1K9, says he is taking orders more orders for his trained dogs than ever.
"Years ago robbers would wait for people to go out of the house before they struck, now they are more brazen and violent," says Mr Wall, who was born in Marylebone.
"Attacks on the homeowner are more common in London - theives grab watches, laptops and demand car keys. People are feeling that danger and willing to invest in pet which will protect them."
Mr Wall, who headed to St John's Wood this week to secure a sale, says his dogs are trained to be family pets first, but also have a nasty streak to protect their owners from attack.
"These are loving, placid family dogs, but they have the ability to switch when needed," he adds.