Craigslist Scam: Don’t Give Pets Away Online

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The conveniences of the World Wide Web have people putting anything and everything online. People try to make a quick buck or two by selling their processions on the web, others think they are helping the needy by giving away their unwanted things for free. Something you should never give away on Craigslist is your pet.

Duke Photo Credit: Ingham County Animal Control
Photo Credit: Ingham County Animal Control

First off, your dog is not a thing. It is a living, loveable being that deserves respect and care. Second of all, Craigslist is full of dog flippers that are not looking out for your pet’s best interest.

A family in Ingahm County, Mich., couldn’t keep their two dogs and decided to place a “free to a good home” ad on Craigslist. Both pets found new homes the same day, but a few months later Ingahm County Animal Control had to rescue one of the dogs who ended up at the hands of an abuser.

The family gave Duke, a white Pit Bull, to a young couple who seemed nice, but somehow the dog ended up at the hands of a teenage boy who kicked and beat the animal causing Duke permanent damages.

Thanks to an anonymous call made to the animal cruelty tip line, animal control learned about the abuser. They were able to locate the teenage boy and rescue the dog.

Animal control got a hold of Duke’s original family because the dog had been microchipped and the information on the chip was never changed. The rescuers informed the family of the misfortune they had bestowed on their dog.

As for the “nice couple” the family had given Duke to for free, animal control was not able to find them.

Due to the abuse Duke endured, he will have a permanent limp on one of his back legs.

Before you decide to give away your pet online, make sure you screen potential adopters thoroughly. Verify the contact information you receive is real. In any case, there are many organizations that are willing to take your unwanted pets and find new homes for them with appropriate adopters. Don’t give away your pets online. Instead work with a reputable organization that will offer your dog the life you can’t.


17 thoughts on “Craigslist Scam: Don’t Give Pets Away Online”

  1. I guess it isn’t said enough to not put your pets on Craig’s list. The dogs sometimes find loving owners, but a lot are abused or used as bait dogs. Poor Duke. i hope he finds a loving home, and that piece of shit teen needs his ass kicked everyday until he walks with a permanent limp.

    • yeah I don’t want to get ride of my dog on craiglist, probably better than the pound were I know he be put to sleep

  2. Why do you want to get rid of your dog on CL.. because of “different” reasons? Where are your feelings? You get a dog and then… just give it away…is it a thing, isn’t it an animal?Why did you get the dog in the first place?
    Pitbull puppies for free, who are the owners who can give these puppies away to anyone?
    Take are of your dog if you love to have one, and take your responability.
    Spam anyone that wants to get “rid of” their dog or puppies because they do not really care, would you “get rid” of your baby on CL?

    • Over the years, I have rescued and fostered many dogs and puppies (as well as cats and kittens). Every potential owner was screened and a “rights and responsibilities” contract was signed. Craig’s list? Really? Come on, people. These animals CAN’T choose their new homes; they totally rely on you to protect them. Beware of the adds online saying that someone wants a pet. Y
      ou need to take care that your pet doesn’t go for experiments either. Sad, I know, but it is an easy way for labs to get their “subjects”. God bless and good luck to all.

    • Some people need to find new homes for their pets. My wife and I got two cats after we got married and had our first place. We now have a young child that is allergic to them. We are still trying to find a home, however we inherently didn’t trust an ad on Craigslist. Stories like this appall me as well, but there are times that people are unable to keep their pets. I think articles like this should give out some contact information for people like my wife and I so that we can find someplace that we can use to find a new home for our cats.

  3. I could not agree more my dogs are like my children so I ask you would you put your child on craigslist I think not, so every time I see someone giving away their pet on craigslist I respond to them telling them that what they are doing is wrong and giving them a few choice words to sit and think about how would they like it if the shoe were on the other foot how would they like it and yes I understand life happens and you are put in a position where u have no other choice but really then u should take every step to find them good loving homes n not just give your pet away cause u woke up one day and all of A sudden u can’t take your dog with you too bad deal with it or don’t have pets

    • Are you KIDDING ME??? ANIMALS equal to CHILDREN? THIS, THIS RIGHT HERE is what is absolutely wrong with the world today. We have pets and we cherish and take good care of those pets. However if there was a fire my TOP priority would be my spouse and children. Your sense of priorities sounds VERY questionable and makes me frightened for any human children you might have.

  4. I was in a antique store once and sitting behind the desk was a beautiful boxer. Being a boxer lover I asked the owner of the store the dogs name, etc, just general “dog lovers” communication and in the conversation she told me that she purchased the dog off of Craig’s List a year ago for $100 because the previous owners “could not keep him any longer.” She couldn’t believe they sold him for that cheap as he was the perfect dog.

    The first thing that went through my mind was this was a stolen dog. Of course the lady that had him now loved him very much and he was in a good home but every time I hear “Craig’s List” my skin just crawls.

    People steal pure bred dogs and sell them fast and cheap “because they can no longer keep them.”

    Just be aware that the beautiful dog you are getting might be someone else’s beloved dog. Not always, but it happens!

  5. It’s not always easy getting rescue groups to help. I took a dog from an abusive/neglect situation earlier this year. Due to the fact that I have 3 of my own already that she doesn’t get along with, I have contacted numerous rescue groups in the area for help placing her. None of them are willing to help even though I said I could foster her at no cost to them until she found a home. Well to be fair, 2 said they would list her, but then never followed through even after my follow up emails. So now as I’m preparing to move to another state I am stuck with the unfortunate decision to either keep her and never see my own 3 again, or to use alternative methods such as craigslist to find her a home. I’m not sticking up for the couple as I detest people who abuse animals and they certainly should have screened them more properly, just trying to show that sometimes it boils down to not having other options. Which is worse, taking them to animal control where they will face an almost certain death or attempting to find a loving home?

  6. I can’t imagine anything worse than having to choose between my human child and my 4 legged child. That dies not mean that I would not choose my human child, it just means that I also value the loyalty and unconditional love from my 4 legged one. I work in rescue and we see dogs turned over to the county shelter every day where the people say they are moving out of town or to an apt. When I commit to an animal I am responsible for it’s well being for life. I can’t help but wonder if some of those people would dump their human child the same way (and it does happen). We are blessed in Tucson AZ that we have a very caring community and a willing government to save and better the lives of these discarded “children”. If you want to help animals and can inspire others who also care to become active, you can have this kind of community too. It didn’t happen overnight but it is gaining more and more momentum every day. I am very proud to have been, and am, very involved in this change.

  7. I have no child living with me so yes my animals are my kids and I would risk my life in case of a fire and any danger to save their lives cause I know that is exactly what they would do for me unconditional love and devotion and the way a lot of people are in the world today I don’t trust them but I can trust my animals and their are a lot of people who gives up their own human children cause they don’t want them look at how many kids are killed maimed and tortured by the hands of their parents This is a different world we live in today and yes some people pick human kids to help and some of us prefer 4 legged kids to love and protect and neither should be judged for who or what they prefer


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