There Have Been Golden Retriever Puppy Scams in Canada

By Miranda Moore | Monday Monday Staff -    2016-10-24

This report really only applies to those of our readers that live in Canada. However, this article can educate all readers in the importance of Internet safety.

Anyone looking to buy a dog online is asked to be on the lookout for scammers after complaints regarding a fraudulent puppy scam on Kijiji. Strathcona County RCMP said they have received several reports of the online scam since August.

In each case, a woman has posted a “for sale” ad on Kijiji for golden retriever puppies. Officers said the fraudster then asks potential buyers to transfer money via email as a deposit to hold the pup until it can be delivered. When the time comes to deliver the puppy, the scammer makes excuses and eventually stops talking to the buyer altogether, RCMP said.

Officers urge people to be vigilant when buying anything online.

“Reputable breeders will never ask you to send or wire money,” RCMP said in a media release Monday.

“No matter how good the deal seems or how cute the animal is, always pay once you’ve inspected the pet and asked the seller all of your questions. Only then should you pay.”
RCMP provided the following tips for buyers and sellers to avoid being scammed:

• Ask a lot of questions. If the seller is reluctant to answer questions, be concerned. Should the seller be unwilling to give information about the item they are selling (history, details or better pictures) be on alert. If the seller is unwilling to meet or give you an address to where you can meet, time to drop them.
• Make sure the product is of value, good quality and functional. For example, if you’re buying a cellphone, make sure you’re able to activate it
• Do not send money via e-transfer or through a money exchange service
• Make the exchange in person with cash, if possible
• Meet in a public place where you feel safe. Bringing a friend along is always a good idea

If you have lost money to this scam or have given out personal or financial information, you’re asked to contact the Strathcona County RCMP at 780-467-7741.
If you have not lost money but suspect you may have been targeted by this scam, you’re asked to contact the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre at 1-888-495-8501.

The lure of a cute golden retriever is very tempting. Trust me, I know. But I must urge readers to be careful when purchasing pets online. Personally, I think wannabe pet owners should adopt instead of shop. Because once you buy a pet and you don’t like it, it’s yours. Unless you can find it a good home. But some people may just abandon the poor thing.

You get information on the dog or cat you are buying, medical reports, they are usually spayed/neutered. You’re also saving a life. That’s reason enough. Some shelters even put you on as a foster home for a week. That way, if the animal is not a good fit, you can bring it back to the shelter.


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