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Better Business Bureau warns of puppy scam

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ROANOKE, Va. (WSET) - The Better Business Bureau (BBB) is warning consumers about a site which is stealing money.

BBB Officials say the website "Ice Dream Bulldogs" claims to sell Bulldog puppies, but does not have any puppies for sale.

The BBB says they started their investigation after being alerted by a customer who paid for a puppy they never received. Officials attempted to contact the company, but has not received a response.

Investigators found several red flags including:

  • Poorly constructed website with considerable grammatical errors.
  • Suspiciously low prices. The company claims to be selling Bulldog puppies for $640. Bulldogs are some of the most expensive breeds due to small litters and birthing complications and can go for as much as $3,000 a puppy.
  • Payment methods. The company requires payment through Walmart-to-Walmart wire transfer, Western Union, and Moneygram.
  • Photos. The pictures of the puppies for sale were pulled from other websites.
  • Location. The company lists a Danville, Virginia address, but the address is a private residence unconnected to the website and “company.”

According to one complainant in Indiana, the website required a 50% deposit and promised to send shipping information soon after, but the shipping information and puppy were never sent. Subsequent phone calls to address the issue were answered by an individual with the “company” who repeatedly claimed they could not hear anyone on the line, followed with hanging up the phone. Though only one victim has come forward thus far, BBB believes multiple people have been scammed by this fraudulent website.

Officials say this site mirrors similar cases in May of 2015 and August of 2016. Those websites, comfortbulldogs.com, and tinyyorkiepupshome.com, used very similar tactics and also listed Southwest Virginia addresses.

The BBB says there are several ways to protect yourself from potential scams. Some of their tips include asking for references of the breeder, asking to see the puppy's parents, and checking the BBB's website to see the company's rating.

For more, visit their website or call the BBB Serving Western VA at (540) 342-3455 or (800) 533-5501.



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