The past year of lockdowns has caused problems galore. For those hoping to add a new family member, one of the sadder ones has been online pet scams.
These heartless practices aren’t new but they’ve increased dramatically as breeders have shut down visits.
Scammers create fake websites that advertise animals they don’t have by swiping photos and information from reputable sites. After they reel someone in, they charge a hefty—and nonrefundable—deposit as well as fees for delivery, vaccinations, veterinary bills and more. Once the money’s in hand, the pet is never delivered.
So, some words to the wise. Consider visiting shelters where you can still see actual animals. If you end up online, request a video chat with the seller and pet simultaneously. The Better Business Bureau has more recommendations for purchasing pets online.