If you keep up with pet news at all, you may have heard about a popular trend in the animal theft underworld called ‘pet flipping.’ Pet flipping occurs when a criminal steals a pet and then sells it to turn a quick profit. The pet can be stolen from a backyard, or fraudulently claimed in response to a Good Samaritan’s “Found Pet” post in the newspaper, on Craigslist, or on social media. Primarily, dogs are the target of pet flippers, and the dogs stolen most often are those that look like “purebreds,” such as Corgis. In some cases, if the dog is not spayed or neutered, the criminal will keep the dog as a breeding machine until it has outlived its earning potential. This type of crime is dangerous to the stolen pet and heartbreaking to the person whose pet has been stolen. Here’s how to keep your Corgi safe from criminals and avoid a ‘pet flipping’ scam.
1. Obtain Your Corgi From a Reputable Source.
If you want to add a Corgi (or any pet) to your family, do your research into where it comes from. Consider visiting your local animal shelter or reputable rescue, and adopt your next pet. Do not search Craigslist or newspaper classified ads for your new pet. If someone is selling a pet, the chances are very good they have only profit in mind. The animal could have been stolen or could have been bred in an abusive and unregulated backyard puppy mill. Don’t take the chance that your new furry family member was obtained through the suffering of someone else. So do your research!
2. Don't Leave Your Corgi Unattended.
Don’t leave your Corgi out alone in the yard all day when you’re not home, and when traveling or walking your Corgi, practice vigilance and common sense. Don’t leave your Corgi tethered out of your eyesight or waiting in the car. The best place for your Corgi when not with you is safe inside your home.
3. Spay/Neuter Your Corgi.
You look at your Corgi and see a cute member of your family. A dognapper looks at your Corgi and sees a revenue stream. Don’t let your Corgi’s fate be several abusive years in a dark garage or filthy kennel, cranking out puppies. It is never too late to spay or neuter your Corgi and it brings with it other health benefits aside from deterring would-be ‘flippers.’
This, more than anything else you do, can help bring your Corgi back to you, the rightful owner. Microchipping is a simple, cheap way to ensure that if your Corgi is ever identified as stolen, authorities can track you down and reunite you with the pet you love.
5. If You Find a Pet, Verify the Owner's Claim.
Before you hand Fido over, make sure that the person who showed up to take him is really the person who lost him. If there's a phone number on the tag, call it. Take the pet to your local shelter or vet to be scanned for a microchip (it’s free). Watch for signs that the dog really knows (and likes) the person who is claiming him.Trust your gut.
Pet flipping crimes continue to increase across the United States. With these simple steps, you can avoid becoming a victim or unwitting accomplice.