Tyrone Veterinary Among Victims of Dog Adoption Scam | New
Recently, Tyrone Veterinary Associates unwittingly became involved in a dog adoption scam with several residents and two local animal rescue organizations.
Since August, Tyrone Veterinary Associates has been receiving phone calls from people inquiring about the welfare of a dog they recently adopted. According to the appellants, the alleged breeder dropped the dog off at the veterinary clinic so that he could be vaccinated. Other times the breeder claims they had a car accident on the way and the dog had to be taken to the vet for treatment. Either way, it always ends the same way: there is no dog, and future owners lose hundreds of dollars.
The victims are usually people who have expressed an interest in adopting a purebred dog. They are contacted via Facebook by someone posing as someone the victim knows. They tell the victim that they know where they can buy a purebred dog for significantly less than what it would normally cost, which can go up to $ 2,000.
The victim is then put in contact with someone falsely claiming to be affiliated with Puppies and Dogs Rehoming in Pa. Or Tyrone Pet Services, two legitimate organizations. Once payment is made, the “breeder” promises to deliver the dog to the victim, only to inform them that it has been brought to Tyrone Veterinary Associates for some reason. Shortly after, the victim learns that they have been duped.
“The last phone call we got, the person learned that the puppy had been in a car accident and was being treated in our office,” said Shaye Sprankle, veterinary technician at Tyrone Veterinary Associates. “But at the time, our doctor was on vacation, so it wasn’t possible.”
Sprankle said a woman had traveled all the way from Roaring Spring to retrieve her dog, only to find it had been a lost trip.
“Some people have been scammed for $ 900 or more,” Sprankle said. “They believe they are getting a deal on purebred puppies like Yorkies, German Shepherds, Beagles, Huskies or French Bulldogs.”
After posting a PSA on Tyrone Veterinary Associate’s Facebook page, Sprankle reached out to Puppies and Dogs Rehoming in Pennsylvania and Tyrone Pet Services to brief them on the situation.
“I wanted them to know that because these are real, genuine organizations,” she said. “I don’t want people to think the job they’re trying to do is a scam.”
Fortunately, there are several ways to tell if an offer is in fact a pet adoption scam.
- There is no other way to contact other than Facebook or, if there is a phone number, it is not local.
- Payment methods cannot be tracked.
- The same purebred dogs that normally cost $ 2,000 or more from a reputable breeder are sold for $ 500. Unfortunately, if it sounds too good to be true, it usually is.
- The salesperson avoids face-to-face meetings. In addition to being wary, it is best to interact with an animal before deciding to adopt it, as this allows an individual to see if they will get along with their new pet.
Sprankle said his office has received calls from at least 10 or more people who have been exploited by the scam, most recently last week.
“I hope that by drawing attention to this we can help put an end to it,” she said. “It doesn’t just hurt our office, it hurts the real organizations that want to help and reintegrate the dogs, and it hurts the community as a whole.”