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Don’t be fooled by lost animal scammers

Don’t be fooled by lost animal scammers

A recent scam around lost pets has come to light that could be potentially harmful to your safety.

Animal shelter and rescue centre for abandoned and abused dogs, Dogtown South Africa has recently discovered that people that have lost their animals are being contacted by an individual claiming to be from Dogtown and to have found their pet.

“The modus operandi is to tell the person that they have found their pet and that if they send them airtime, they will be able to send them a location pin for them to collect their pet. In addition, they ask for proof of ownership including but not limited to photographs of them with their pet and ownership papers,” says Tracy McQuarrie, founder of Dogtown South Africa.

McQuarrie is concerned that this could potentially have people being lured to a location for criminal purposes as well as the fact that criminals can pick up all sorts of personal information from the background of a photograph.

This scam is also not limited to any one area with reports coming from Weltevreden Park, Benoni and Roodepoort. The police advise that those who have fallen victim to the crime report it to their local police station and whilst the caution is not to post photographs of the suspects, they should share their warnings on social media.

“There is of course potential reputational damage to Dogtown as they have chosen to use our name for their scam,” continues McQuarrie saying, “Dogtown staff would never ask a stranger for airtime or contact someone out of the blue. We have processes and procedures that we follow to ensure the safety of the animals and the people associated with Dogtown in any way.”

About Dogtown SA

Dogtown SA is a non-profit sanctuary for dogs, situated in the mountains near the Hennops River. The dedicated team of behaviourists and caregivers provide care for dogs who have lost their families or been rescued from dire situations. The dogs are given individual care and attention whilst they wait for their forever homes. There are many wonderful dogs at Dogtown who through no fault of their own have found themselves homeless and often in need of care and rehabilitation.


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Tame Communications (known as tameTIMES) was established in 1997. This long-established popular community title includes the key shopping centres:  Alberton City, Mall...

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