Animal Control Warns About Dangers of 'Craigslist Ads' and 'Pet Flippers'
A white Pit Bull puppy, named Duke, will have a permanent limp because of injuries he sustained while a teenage boy kicked and beat him after he was given away on Craigslist. Duke had belonged to a family that ran an ad on Craigslist offering him, “free to a good home.”
They claimed they could not afford to keep their two dogs and gave Duke to a young couple that “seemed nice, but didn’t have much money,” says Ingham County Animal Control in Michigan. They gave away the other dog that same day.
In April, Ingham County Animal Control got a tip from a frantic young girl reporting that a small white Pit Bull was being kicked and beaten by a teenage boy. That dog was Duke. The couple was never found, but Duke will never walk or run normally because of the abuse he suffered at their hands.
Officers eventually found Duke, thanks to the Good Samaritan who called in the tip on the animal-cruelty tip line. They also were able to contact his original family because he is microchipped.
In a June 6, 2013, report on WILX.com, Ingham County Animal Control warns about the dangers of giving away any pet without carefully screening the potential adopter. They advise pet owners to personally check out the location where they plan to keep the animal and verify their identity and the contact information they provide.
People give away all kinds of things for free on Craigslist, but your pet should not be one of them, Ingham County Animal Control told WILX.com.
“Dog Flipper” Nabbed After Report of Craigslist Scam
After a dog owner called Indianapolis Police to report their German Shepherd had been stolen in a Craigslist scam in January 2013, authorities began to monitor Johnny Jones, Jr., who had been flagged as a possible “dog flipper.”
Indianapolis Animal Care and Control officials explain that “dog flippers” get dogs for free or very cheap and flip them for profit like house flippers flip houses. They say Jones acquired German Shepherds, Rottweillers and Pit Bulls from unsuspecting owners on Craigslist and other sources.
When officers did a search of Jones’ home, they confiscated firearms and four dogs. They believe Jones may also be linked to stealing some dogs out of people's yards. He reportedly attack-trained some of the dogs, which would change the behavior of the dog, even if it were later returned to the owner.
The German Shepherd owner found her dog because it was micro-chipped, but most owners never see their pets again and it is likely that the future of these animals is not good. Indianapolis Animal Care and Control warns that animals used for “flipping” are often housed in horrid puppy mill-like conditions.
In the case of Johnny Jones, Jr., police say he was charged with being a serious violent felon in possession of firearms. Unfortunately, there are no laws that address “dog flipping”
--If you cannot keep your pet, take it to your local animal shelter or humane society—only after you have exhausted all possibility of having it adopted by someone you know and trust and preferably by someone the dog already knows, so that the pet does not feel abandoned.
--Check the background and facilities of anyone who claims to be a “rescuer.” Unfortunately,“dog flippers” sometimes pose as “rescuers.”
--Do not advertise a pet free or at a very low cost on Craigslist or any other publication.