Watch Out For Dog Scams

By: Beth Ferester & Company | Published 12/30/2020



There have been many unscrupulous folks that have come out, more than ever, during this time of the pandemic. I suppose they feel that people are very vulnerable right now and looking for any type of comfort they can find from buying a new house, adding a pool, buying boats and RV’s.  Another comforting addition to a family is a family pet, and my children and grandchildren have experienced the joy of getting a new pet over the past couple of weeks, but only after suffering from separate DOG SCAMS. These have been heartbreaking experiences that, thankfully, ended up happy.

Meet Henry – This little French Bulldog nugget belongs to my son, Ryan, founder of Lovebeans.  Ryan lives in California, alone, but with lots of friends nearby.  One of the friends found a litter of these precious pups over the internet and arranged to meet the “breeder” to see them.  Four other friends, including my somewhat naive son, went along.  The meeting was in a parking lot with the pups in the back of a van – ALERT #1 but ignored by this entire group due to the adorable pups you immediately fall in love with. Now, how many breeders meet you in a parking lot?

Each party chose a pup and were told they didn’t have papers at that time but would send and that they all had all preliminary shots etc.  So, off they went with Henry heading to live with Ryan, my free spirited son.  Ryan took Henry everywhere, but after a few days, he had terrible stomach issues as did the other pups and Henry had two lumps on his throat.  After paying way too much for these dogs, Ryan incurred over $1300 worth of vet bills to save poor Henry who also has a genetic heart condition, ongoing.  So, where was the dog “breeder” after these afflictions were discovered?  Who knows since he won’t return calls.  The other pups and Henry are doing fairly well now, considering, and we have figured out that these pups came from parents that were not genetically compatible and with defects themselves.

The good news is that Henry was the sickest, but has turned the corner and is growing and active as he should be.  The whole family (we have four children and nine grandchildren) has fallen in love with Henry’s videos of play-dates with his siblings. Ryan has seen a naturalist vet who is treating him and he is thriving thank goodness.

Now, meet Nash, who appeared over the internet to my granddaughter who had just left here to go back to College Station.  Grace was looking for a puppy as her Mom had given her permission to search for one.  Voila, there was precious Nash, a rare, black Golden Doodle at a bargain price of $1000.  Graces mom, my daughter, and I were at dinner in Maine where we had escaped the heat for a couple of weeks and Grace called excited over the dog. Also, she could be shipped “Puppy Express” that very evening, if her Mom could send the thousand dollars ASAP!  We thought that seemed far-fetched, but since Grace was having a bad week, we said okay and sent the money.

Next, the “breeder” called and said that “Nash” had been delayed in quarantine and to send more money to get him out.  ALERT #2 for our family, but one we figured out pretty quickly – just too late to have already lost the money, and bringing Grace to huge tears running down her sweet face.

We told Grace we would find another Golden for her to be patient but even at 20 years old, she said she wanted that “Nash”.  Finally convinced that “Nash” wasn’t real, Grace found a real breeder in Oklahoma where her Dad made the drive with her 10 hours in one day to pick up the little pup.  And, unbelievably, to us, Grace named her Nash.    

Now meet the real Nash and happy Grace with her new puppy. Grace lives with us in the summers interning with me, so hopefully, I can convince her grandfather to have Nash as a guest here too.

As a side note, meet Casper, the kitty, and thank goodness not a scam. Casper just joined my grandson JP in Scotland as his new “comfort pet”.

In closing, I just urge everyone to look out for pet scams as well as other scams that are occurring all over the world in these vulnerable times.

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