Manitoba woman concerned about possible pug scam
A Manitoba woman is warning people about an apparent scam after she put down a deposit for a new pug puppy, but never got the dog and lost her money.
Colleen Garrett responded to an advertisement in December on Kijiji for pug puppies.
Garrett recently had to put down her 15-year-old pug named Coffee and wanted to add a new dog to the family.
She visited a home in Winnipeg's North End in person to see the litter of five puppies and took a liking to a black-coloured pug, the runt of the bunch she said.
"I fell in love with her and I put a deposit on her," Garrett explained.
The puppy was only three weeks old, so Garrett had to wait five more weeks before she could take her new dog home.
During those five weeks she kept in contact with the seller, who sent Garrett photos and updates on how the puppy was doing. Garrett even gave the dog a name, calling her Sophie.
When she went to pick up the puppy on Jan. 30 at the home where she saw the litter, she said no one answered the door. She and her husband returned one day later and there was still no one home.
Garrett said a neighbour and landlord told her the seller had moved out.
“I go ‘oh my god there went my deposit, there went my dog,’” said Garrett. “So I messaged her [the seller] and said ‘what’s going on’. No reply.”
“I said ‘am I getting my dog’ and that was it, I never heard back.”
She's now out $400 and doesn't have a dog, but what Garrett's more worried about is the well-being of the litter of pugs she saw in the home.
“I’m upset, I’m really upset about it,” Garrett said. “Who’s to say where these dogs are now.”
Garrett and her daughter Tara said they contacted Winnipeg police but said her daughter was told there wasn't much officers could do.
“Everybody’s past the money part, it’s about are the puppies safe,” Tara Garrett added.
The Garrett’s have also contacted a veterinarian where the seller said the puppies were going to get their shots. They said they’ve also reached out to other veterinarians to be on the lookout for any pug puppies.
Manitoba Pug Rescue executive director Lisa Chorneychuk said there are very few pug puppies in Manitoba and they're in very high demand.
Chorneychuk isn't aware of this latest report of a scam, but knows of other online scams where people have put down a deposit on a pug they didn't see in person and never got the dog or their money back.
"It's very disheartening," Chorneychuk said. "I'd be very concerned as to where those puppies are."
The Winnipeg Police Service said it's not aware of any ongoing investigations regarding pug scams.
A spokesperson for Manitoba's Chief Veterinary Office wasn't immediately aware of any complaints about the well-being of pugs in Winnipeg, but the office is looking further into the matter.
CTV News reached out to the seller by phone and visited the home where Garrett saw the pug, but our call wasn’t answered and no one answered the door at the house where Garrett said she saw the pugs.