West Yorkshire is the cat theft capital of the north, according to police figures.
Direct Line Pet Insurance conducted research which showed 261 cats were reported stolen in 2016, up from 181 in 2014 - a rise of 40%.
Our region had the highest number outside London, where 48 were recorded, followed by West Yorkshire, which had 26 and 24 thefts respectively.
The data, which Direct Line collected from UK police forces, showed that less than a fifth 18% of stolen cats were recovered by officers.
However, additional research demonstrated the true number of cat thefts could be much higher, with as many as 360,000 adults believing that a cat was stolen from their care in the past 12 months.
Of the breeds recorded, the Bengal, and Domestic shorthair were taken most frequently, followed by the Russian Blue and Siamese.
Head of Pet Insurance at Direct Line, Prit Powar, said: “If an owner believes their cat is missing, they should first check the immediate vicinity such as in neighbouring gardens or garages as well as asking local people if they have seen it.
“If their cat is still missing, owners should contact their local animal warden.”
People may not realise they can report suspected stolen cats to the police and ask for a crime reference number.