You’re looking for a purebred dog or cat, bird or monkey, slider or pet pig. You surf the Internet and answer a classified ad or post one of your own looking for a puppy, kitten or other animal. You get an email back stating that someone has the perfect puppy or kitten waiting for you. How do you know that the offer is not one of the Internet pet scams?
The sellers send pictures and say that, for a very small amount of money, they will ship your pet to your door. An agent from a (supposed) transport agency will be handling the shipping of your pet. Or they detail a problem than have which causes them to give up their pet to a good home. They ask personal emails about how you can care for the pet. They are very convincing.
All you have to do to get your pet is to wire the funds via Western Union, purchase a cash card or use some other non-refundable service to them. Oftentimes, the destination of the funds is Cameroon, Africa; however, it can be anywhere. The internet pet scammers then send you an authentic looking transfer of ownership as well as shipping documents with airline information on it, which is really cut and pasted artwork with logos and pictures stolen from other airline and transport websites without their permission.
A day or so later, they inform you that your pet is in an airport someplace and needs either another crate (air-conditioned or pressurized) or another vaccination or pet insurance or medical attention. They will tell you that you will be held personally liable if you do not wire more money. If you send more money, they come up with another excuse why your pet cannot be delivered. They threaten that you will be held personally liable if you do not pay.
In reality, there is no pet, and you have been caught up in one of a number of Internet pet scams. Chances of getting your money back are very slim. Hundreds of people just like you have sent thousands of dollars to Cameroon and other countries in hopes of getting an adorable pet they see in a picture. There are many warning signs. More information here.