They say seeing is believing, but then again, we are told to have faith and give people the benefit of the doubt. Trust is an essential quality in business, but unfortunately, unscrupulous sellers have found Craigslist to be their goldmine by taking advantage of trusting buyers. One of the most popular products advertised on the site is pets. However, most are stolen, and the sellers want to make quick cash as was the case with a family’s missing dog found listed on Craigslist and sold for $200. Here is the story of how the dog went missing and the efforts made to recover him.
Neighbor Steals Dog and Sells Him
On April 16, 2019, Samantha Norris went home after a long day at work. The first thing she wanted to do was bring her two dogs, Bolt and Ted, inside but only Bolt ran into the house leaving Norris to conclude that her other dog was missing. She thought he had run away but could not understand how he did so seeing that her yard was fenced and locked. So Norris consulted the security cameras; unfortunately, they were not working. Without any clue about what could have happened to Ted, the Norris family began a frantic search around the neighborhood, posting flyers all over the town hoping for the positive feedback. Two weeks went by, and since Norris had gone ahead to use social media in search of her dog, the first hopeful response came on May 3, 2019. Someone had spotted a Craigslist ad and messaged Norris with the link asking if that was Ted. According to People Magazine Norris knew the listed dog was Ted because of the mole on his face’s right side, wrinkled forehead and dog mum maternal instinct.
The Craigslist ad said the dog belonged to a family that was moving away and would like to give it a new home at a rehoming charge of $200. It was quite a captivating advert saying how the 2-year old pug was up-to-date with his shots, very friendly and social. Norris pretended to be interested in buying the dog when she contacted the number put down in the ad. However, the woman on the line said she had already sold the dog to a Glendale resident. By this time, Norris had realized that woman was a thief who claimed not to have stolen the dog. She explained the dog jumped into her van but couldn’t keep her story straight; later said the dog had walked up to her porch.
Norris wanted to get her dog back, therefore, asked private investigators for help while other good-willed people offered their assistance. Besides pressing charges, Norris was ready to pay those who had been scammed into buying the dog the $200 rehoming fee they were charged. Since Ted was microchipped, taking him to a vet to have the information scanned would help reunite him with his family. The most surprising yet frustrating thing for Norris was the woman who had stolen the dog lived a few blocks away from her, and it broke the heart that Ted was around the corner, but she could not have done anything about it.
Buying Back Your Dog is Nothing New
The Norris family might look crazy for wanting to buy back their dog after it was stolen and listed on Craigslist, but there is nothing you would not do for your loved ones. Pet Amber Alert published a story of how one dog, Sushi, seemingly escaped through a hole in the backyard fence and someone called the Lowes’ family asking if they were missing a dog. Since they were yet to confirm if Sushi was missing, they did not pay much attention to the strange call until they realized he was indeed missing. Upon calling the stranger, the person claimed not to know anything about a dog. As with nearly every stolen dog, Sushi ended up on Craigslist, and Kara Lowe decided to confront the seller. Her approach did not yield any success, so she pretended to be interested in buying the dog. The meeting happened, but the dog that the seller brought did not look like Sushi. The coat had been dyed a different color, but since a friend with a microchip reader had accompanied her, the chip’s information proved that the dog was Sushi. Lowe did not mind paying to get Sushi back because the 11 years she had spent with Sushi was irreplaceable, and it was better to lose the money than the dog forever.
Most Common Scam on Craigslist Pet Sale
Buying a dog should be a joyous occasion, but sometimes that excitement is short-lived. ABC 11 reported how one family in Raleigh was duped into buying a sick dog that died within 24 hours. The Graveses thought they had found their perfect furry friend when they saw a puppy listed on Craigslist. They contacted the seller who said that the puppy had her shots but could not provide proof of veterinary care because they claimed with the COVID-19 pandemic, they had vaccinated the dog themselves. However, the seller was cunning enough to show the Graveses a picture of the shots given, and that was enough to convince the family to part with $300 in exchange for the puppy they named Jasmine. On their way home, they noticed that Jasmine needed urgent medical help and upon taking her to the vet, they were told they had bought a severely anemic dog, infested with roundworms and hookworms. Her condition was so bad that the vet suggested they put Jasmine down to save her from her misery. The heartache the Graveses experienced despite having had the dog for only 24 hours was still unbearable. Still, the decision was for the best, so they cremated the dog and buried her in their backyard.