A mother has launched a public appeal to find her son's pet dog believed to have been stolen during a day-time raid on their property.

Natalie Ronan, 29, and her parents were at the funeral of a family friend on May 23 when their home in Waltham Way, Chingford, was "completely ransacked" by burglars.

Ms Ronan had picked up her son Aaron, aged three, from nursery and returned home at 5pm to find their five year-old tan-coloured pet Chihuahua 'Alfie' had disappeared.

The unidentified raiders had used tools to break the back window and gain entry to the property where they then stole iPads, jewellery, laptops and money, as the family grieved the passing of a close friend. 

'Alfie' was bought by Ms Ronan at just seven weeks old and his disappearance is considered to be out of the ordinary.

"He is a timid little dog and is quite shy. We've had him since a pup so he knows where his home is if he was to have escaped during the burglary.

"Alfie is my son's best friend and all I want to do is re-unite him with his dog. This last week has been awful not knowing if he is safe and with our house being tipped upside down.

"I just want him back and I'm happy to offer a reward," said Ms Ronan.

Ms Ronan believes in the "bottom of my heart Alfie has been sold-on to make a "quick buck" after searching the area of Chingford high and low and sending out hundreds of missing posters. 

Police were called to the property shortly after 5pm on Friday and Ms Ronan was also given hope as the police had found a tan-coloured dog, but the 29 year-old was left feeling even more "heart-broken" when she realised it was not Alfie.

If you have any information regarding Alfie, please contact 07780460282.