Puppy Selling Scams
Puppies for "Adoption" Scams

There are too many puppy selling scams to give you a detailed list, but here are some things to keep in mind & some links to help you understand some of the most common scams out there.

Pet scammers often take advantage of free listing services like facebook, craigslist & various free trading post sites/newspapers to advertise their puppies. Many times, they are advertising puppies that do not exist. They will offer puppies for free you need only pay shipping OR they want you to send them a money order to "hold" your new puppy and they never had a puppy to sell you in the first place. First and foremost, scammers are out for your money. They will tell you sob stories, use logos from legitimate breeders, lie about pedigrees (you can verify a pedigree with most legitimate pet registries, for example you can search an AKC registration here).

HINT: Sometimes a quick google search for images of the breed of puppy you are looking for will show you many sites using the SAME PHOTO as the one on the puppy ad you are looking at - it is one of the quickest & simplest things you can do.... search for images (ex. bichon puppy (or puppies) or Jack Russell puppies etc...) AND scroll through the 1st page of images presented - - if you see the photo from the ad you are already looking at, chances are it's a scam.

A fairly new development in puppy selling scams is the "puppies for adoption" or "rescue puppies" scams. These are sellers who present themselves as Rescues but are truly selling puppies on a large scale. BEWARE - - PARTICULARLY IF THE "RESCUE" HAS MANY LITTERS OF PUPPIES. The reality is that legitimate Rescue organizations don't get lots of puppy litters & most that do already have a wait-list of previous adopters who are wanting a puppy (they just don't have a need to advertise the few puppies they do get).

Pet Rescue Fraud: More common than you may think
Dog Adoption Scams
How Can You Tell If A Dog Rescue Is Legit?
Current Pet Scams (not an endorsement, just more info on puppy selling scams)
How to Spot a Puppy Scam Online
How does a Puppy Scam Work? (not an endorsement, just more info on puppy selling scams)

How does a pet scam start? The scammer will offer pets for sale or adoption, advertising on facebook, Craigslist, TradingPost and any other free classified ad websites. Many will even create custom websites to lure you in. Once you send them your contact information telling them you are interested in a puppy, they will go to great lengths to keep you involved in the conversation AND get you emotionally invested in "your new puppy". You can expect emails, SMS messages and/or phone calls, all trying to convince you that they have puppies to sell or give away. The goal is to get the intended victim emotionally invested in a fictitious pet. When people act on emotion they are easier to scam.

HINT: Much like doing a google search for images, you can do a search for phone numbers & email addresses AND of course kennel names (you are looking for things like reviews and potential duplicate websites). An example, if I search for my phone number online, I can see what city that phone number is issued AND if the number is a mobile number or a landline. It may be a red flag if the seller tells you they are in one city, but the number is a landline in another city.

© Jen Fone, The ENPB Movement, Dog-Safety.net - Permission is given to reproduce in whole or in part as long as this © is included (if you put this on your website, please let me know)