State police warn of purebred puppy scam

ALBANY — State police are warning prospective pet owners after some Essex County residents were scammed out of hundreds of dollars.

The victims answered classified ads for purebred puppies for sale.

After the victims contact them, the suspects provide a photo of the breed they’re seeking and arrange a deposit to be paid. Once the deposit is cleared, the victim is provided an address, which does not exist, to pick up their puppy. Recently, the fake addresses have been in the St. Lawrence County area.

The deposit is requested to be made via payment apps, such as Zelle or CashApp, troopers said. All communication with the “breeder” takes place via text.

The “breeder” will often send stock photos of dogs taken from the internet.

A reputable breeder will always communicate via phone or video chat. People are also advised to seek a breeder’s references.

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Johnson Newspapers 7.1