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In a new report, the Better Business Bureau (BBB) warns that the majority of sponsored online postings advertising puppies for sale, aren’t real.
The Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre received more than 333 complaints about the issue last year, more than they’ve ever had. With losses totalling $222,000 expectant owners were asked to make money transfers in advance for an animal that never arrived or existed in the first place.
“Simply put, many of the pets marketed online do not exist – at least not as advertised. In virtually all cases, the scammers never own the animals described on the sites,” said the bureau in a statement published this week.
The report notes that buyers stumble across fake sites through a simple search, and the B.C branch of the bureau says they’ve received 12 complaints in the last month from within the province, although that number is likely much higher, according to the statement.
The report and the bureau both suggest meeting the seller in person and getting a look at the animal before you go through with the transaction, as many of the bogus sites use stock images of the dogs to dupe prospective owners.
While advertising puppies for sale has become a trend on sites like Kijiji and Craigslist, it’s still important to never buy before meeting in person.
Read the full story at Better Business Bureau
This story was summarized by Canadian Fraud News Inc.