After Maggie's death at 10 1/2 years, we had a hole in our hearts and Molly became extra clingy due to missing her buddy. After a few weeks we decided
we needed another Maltese to love. After some looking, during which we encountered more scams than real pups, we finally found one ready for adoption
advertised on Craigslist in the Dallas area. Sorting the legimate ad from the scams was not easy, but after some communicaion back and forth via text,
and checking out the seller's information as best I could, we agreed to meet her at the store she manages (NOT a pet store) in a mall near where she
had told me she lived. We would have prefered to see exactly where the pup was born & raised, but settled for this as a start since it was a safe &
reasonable neutral location. I did find a facebook page for the breeder operation that gave me some confidence in all she had told me via text.
After meeting her and the pup, and being comfortable with both her & the pup, we bought the pup, which came with CKC papers.
BEWARE PUPPY SCAMS: Here are some of the scams & signs of scams that we encountered in our search.
- Websites with just one or two pics of each "available" pup. These pictures are too easily stolen from legitimate breeder sites.
- Promises to sell you the pup, ship by air with an escort, and deliver to your door "for just $580" or some other ridiculously low price.
- The website looks great, but something just doesn't sound/feel right ...the pitch is too pat, there are spelling or grammar errors, etc
- Strange how many times we saw the pitch "we aren't really selling them (typically have both a male & a female), but are giving them away to a good home for a small re-homing fee because we are unable to keep them (have to move, lost job, etc, etc, etc)."
- One Craigslist ad sounded good but had many, many gramattical errors and too low a price. The map location indicated looked suspicious (an extremely rural area on the "wrong" side of town where there are very few homes), and the long, rambling ad first said "not registerable," later said "with all AKC papers", and later said "no registration papers." Oh, and it included yet another too low $580 price "for either or both male and female puppies" that they were simply no longer able to afford for some reason or another.
- As tempting as it may be, NEVER give a deposit for a pup you have not seen in person unless you have personally met and trust the seller.
- NEVER wire a deposit in cash, money order, etc. That money is gone with no recourse. If a legimate breeder cannot accept a credit card deposit, be very, very suspicious!
- If you are able to get a street address from a seller, check the address out on a map program, google, etc. Do a google maps street view. Many scammers will provide a fake address to callers wanting to make an appointment to see the pup in person. DO NOT SEND MONEY YET UNTIL YOU SEE THE PUP IN PERSON!
- If you do agree to meet so you can see the puppy, be sure you are comfortable with the location. If it is a breeder's home/kennel, google the name and/or search in other ways to verify that it actually exists. Do a google maps street view. Then if you drive there and something doesn't look right, DO NOT STOP!
- If you are provided a telephone number, note what the area code is. Does that match where the seller claims to be located? - Do a "whois" search on the website by browsing to who.is/ and then entering the website name in the box. Note the admin name & location, the website location, the server location, etc. If who.is indicates the owner information is hidden/private, be wary. If (as in one case for us) the owner name is private, the website is based in Panama, and the server is located in Britain, while the seller claims to be in Minnnesota, too many warning lights are flashing! Something we said must have alerted this one because after two emails, they never replied to us again. That made me more suspicious, and a simple google search turned up other people who had been scammed by this same seller! One had wired cash via Western Union for purchase plus shipping only to get a call on the supposed shipping date requesting more money "due to bad weather affecting shipping container requirements." When he got suspicious and called the police dept in the city where the seller claimed to be, he was told it was all a scam. After more searching, I found the identical information and pictures on another website claiming to be based in a different state ...and still a scam by the same people!
BB is a happy and playful little pup. She quickly made up with Molly, and likes to snuggle much more than Molly does! She is a
true "ankle biter" to get attention when she want to play. It took her two or three days, but she won Molly over and they have a
great time playhing together. Molly was a holy terror when she was this age, and now she is getting a dose of her own medicine!
BB is so small that we had to get creative in puppy-proofing the back yard fence. Twice she has found the small gap between the
gate & the fence large enough to slip through. We think we have that blocked now. Fortunately, she has decided that her little
body won't go thorugh the chain link fence, but that doesn't stop her from poking her head through every now and then!
On day one in the house, BB was trying to figure out the doggy door. Molly took the role of teacher, and while BB was looking
through the glass on either side of the doggy door, Molly would go through, then stand on the other side and bark at BB through
the glass, occasionally using her nose to flip the door open. On day two, after more coaxing from Molly and after being gently
put through the door a few times, BB suddenly caught on ...she reared up, hit the doggy door with both front feet, and tumbled
heels over head through the door. She quickly grew to love the door, using it so frequently that when we lose track of her the
first place we look is outside. But there has been a time or two when we were outside with the door shut when she decided to go
back inside ...only to find that once she was between the doors that she couldn't get the leverage to get back through the door
flap! We call this "puppy under glass".
When BB plays, she plays hard. And when she sleeps, she sleeps hard. She often rolls onto her back while sleeping, sprawled out
like a baby. Other times she ends up sleeping snuggled up to feet. This must be a puppy thing as we have a picture have a
picture of Molly at about the same age in almost the exact same position! We put a small doggy bed beside the couch just to the
left of this picture. She will go to sleep in the bed, but while sleeping will sometimes crawl out of the bed onto the floor. So
when gettin up from the couch it is a good idea to take a look before putting big feet down!