The incident occurred at around 7.50pm on Thursday (July 15), when the victim was walking her dog along the canal towpath, close to Oxford Street.
As she stood up after putting her dog’s lead on, an unknown man approached her and punched her to the side of her head, before attempting to grab the lead out of her hand. Luckily the woman held on tightly to it and the man made off.
He has since been described as white, aged in his early 20s, of slim build and around 5ft 6ins tall. He had a short, dark-coloured beard and was wearing a black hooded top with white stripes on the sleeve and tracksuit bottoms and white trainers.
DC Peter Bennett, of Lancaster Police, said: “This was a nasty incident, where a woman was punched to her head before an attempt was made to steal her dog. She has been left understandably shaken and we are determined to find the person responsible.
“We are now asking anybody with information about this incident to get in touch. Perhaps you recognise the description given, or think you know who is responsible, or maybe you have CCTV or dashcam footage which can help us. Whatever information you have please get in touch with us straight away.
“We appreciate this incident will have caused concern in the area but we are treating it as isolated at this time and do not believe there is any reason for dog-owners to be concerned. However, we would urge people to be vigilant and to report any suspicious behaviour to us.”
Anybody with information is asked to get in touch on 101, quoting log 1440 of July 15.