The customised 110 Defender, which belongs to Chris Burns of Breezeleaf Spaniels, Powder Mills, Leigh contained three springer spaniels and two cocker spaniels.

The dogs are all micro-chipped and contained in a silver box divided into three kennels on the back of the vehicle.

The vehicle’s number plate is DOG 9K.

The theft took place between 4.35pm and 5pm on Friday.

• Anyone with information is urged to contact police on 01732 379217 or Kent Crimestoppers on 0800 555111.