Animalcouriers has recently heard from a number of people reporting pet-related scams. For potential victims in the UK, the scammer often claims to be based in Scotland — making it seem more likely that someone might accept a pet delivered, unseen, by courier.
Erica wrote to tell us she’d see a scam on Facebook relating to Pug puppies in Kirkwall. And Mrs Boyd wrote to let us know she recently managed to avoid a scam involving a Pomeranian puppy, thanks in part to the Animalcouriers webpage about scams. The seller claimed to be living in Scotland and, owing to work commitments, couldn’t make time for her to visit the puppy. Instead, she would have to have it delivered, unseen, in return for a £200 payment made by Western Union. Mrs Boyd takes up the story:
“I found all of this very strange and decided to look into it as a possible scam and thankfully came across your website highlighting such scams….THANK YOU!! On Googling the email address provided I have come to realise that this ‘seller’ is actually advertising on various websites, selling numerous breeds of pups from various locations around the UK but always using the same email and contact number…. email@example.com, tel: 07055 147 739…..Please beware!!!”
Meanwhile we heard from Elke in Germany reporting a scam relating to blue and yellow macaws, also originating on Facebook:
“Es geht um 2 Gelbbrustaras, werden für ganz wenig Geld angeboten von einer Person namens Santos Macias.” [translation: Two blue and yellow macaws were being offered in return for very little money by a woman called Santos Macias.]
Elke was being asked to pay flight costs of €248 to a recipient in Cameroon called Nanje Christel. Payment was to be made immediately by Western Union “because the banks are closed today”. The email address given was firstname.lastname@example.org (the transport company was called variously Pet Air and The Animal Transport Company); with a phone number of +44 7031 960 957.
Please visit our webpage about scams to find out more about the typical characteristics of pet-related scams and how to report them.