Puppy Scams on the Rise

With people staying home more than usual, the idea of having a cute, cuddly puppy has become popular. But those looking to add a furry member to the family are warned to be on the lookout for puppy scams.

Who would dare? According to Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel and the Humane Society of the United States, plenty of scammers are out there ready to prey on unsuspecting families, and reports of puppy scams are increasing. 

Consumers are sometimes unwittingly supporting criminal and cruel illegal operations. Puppy mill operators can hide behind social distancing and complete all transactions online and deliver the animal offsite.

Molly Tamulevich, Michigan State Director for the Humane Society of the United States, said, “Taking advantage of Michiganders by exploiting our love of animals is as cruel to the people as it is to the dogs.”

Americans spend over $1 billion per year buying puppies. Nessel’s office suggests that consumers research the breed and the breeder, as well as the specific advertised puppy. Do not buy sight-unseen. Buyers should use a credit card and retain all documents and communication from the breeder, or better yet, go puppy shopping at your local shelter.

Reporting for WGRT- Jennie McClelland