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Troubleshooter: Dog breeder scam alert

Troubleshooter: Dog breeder scam alert (WKRC)

CINCINNATI (WKRC) - They are cute, cuddly, and irresistible and they don't exist.

A warning about a scam that is luring dog lovers and taking thousands of dollars from some local viewers. The scam preys on people who are looking for a dog to replace the one they recently lost. People like Kim Martini of Delhi whose daughter found a dog with a great picture advertised on the internet.

Kim Martini said, “Instantly fell in love with it. They had like four good, real pictures. Adorable."

The dog, a Maltese, was similar to their dog who had just died after 15 years.

Martini said, “The price was 500 for the dog and 180 to have him flown, shipped to us and send him right to the house."

Martini sent the money via Money Gram to someone who claimed to be a breeder in Virginia. But the dog didn't arrive, instead she was told it was sick and she needed to send $1,000 for medicine.

“This time I sent Western Union 1,000 dollars,” despite that she still didn't receive the dog. Why?

“He needed more shots and stuff and it was going to be another 14-hundred dollars. Well, ‘I told him, ‘No, I'm paying 14-hundred dollars. I've paid too much.’"

But the sellers talked Martini into sending half that much, $700, in order to finally get the dog. Unfortunately, that didn't happen. Instead they asked for another $1,800. So after having spent $3,500, she finally said no and she and her daughter went to an area breeder.

The Martinis said they learned their lesson and found a dog breeder in Kentucky and actually saw the Maltese before they paid any money.

“We learned our lesson and we just want other people to know that there are people that take advantage of you, bad time."

The main thing to remember is never wire money to people you don't know. If you send money by Western Union, Money Gram, even prepaid debit cards, it's like sending cash. The money is not traceable and you can't get it back. So, no matter how good a dog looks on a website, always go in person to a breeder or the local pound and to find a pet.

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