Scam preys on pet finders disguised as local rescue
CHICAGO — A new online scam is preying on people looking for pups.
Heather Owen, from “One Tail at a Time,” was alerted to the scam by someone who got suspicious when the person on the other end of a Facebook page named “@peterscue1234,” posted cute pictures of designer pups supposedly up for adoption asking for a “down payment for reservation.”
Owen said that once the pups were reserved, he was telling people to come to One Tail at a time’s address to pick them up.
The scammer gave his email and a phone number to send the money to, which then WGN called.
“This is Sean Lewis, I’m a reporter with WGN TV, I’m calling about some puppies.”
With that, the man told WGN he was in Indiana and would deliver a puppy later today upon sending him 400 dollars, with delivery.
“Are you trying to rip people off?” Sean asked.
The man on the other line hung up.
“To prey on people that are trying to do the right thing and adopt is really awful and then to use a non-profit, I think is especially egregious,” Owen said.
She was worried that it would deter people from adopting. Like all reputable rescues, One Tail at a Time urges people to use caution along with common sense.
A person contacted the rescue directly and asked if this process was valid and One Tail at a Time was able to warn them before they sent the money.
Owen then wanted to remind Chicagoans that many of their own pups are looking to be adopted.
“You don’t need to go into a pet store, or breeder, or look online. You can just go into your local shelter, and we’ll help you find your best friend,” Owen said.
That way, those looking for a new furry family member don’t get scammed.
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