Craigslist scams

This link will take you to a narrative used in many ads on Craigslist.







Identify and Avoiding the Cameroon Pet Scammers

Pet Recovery Services That Solicit

There are illegitimate individuals who call owners of missing pets and claim to conduct searches employing various methods, most often calling neighbors and alerting them to “be on the lookout for the pet”.

Some may actually do what they claim, but experience tells us that a “red flag” should go up, when they call you (most often because the pet owner ran a lost pet ad).

We suggest that, if the service appears of value (calling neighbors is all but useless, compared to putting up flyers), take their phone number and call them back before signing up. Also, ask your local shelter, as well as the BBB if they have knowledge of the organization/company. Finally, are they nonprofit? If they claim they are, ask for their tax-exempt number!

Owners of missing pets are vulnerable, and want to try everything to get their pet back. But it exacerbates the stress to get scammed by someone who preys on that very vulnerability.

Email Scams

Email Scammers find their way in to our lives through many avenues. One way is with Lost and Found Pets.

For the owners of lost birds, they use the ploy that they have your pet and will return it if you pay them up front (even before you see it). Please know that only a scammer would do that. If you give them money (through any avenue) you will just have lost money. They don’t have your bird. Any person that really has your bird would gladly let you see them.

For those that have found birds, they will ask you to ‘ship’ the bird to them. This is also a scam. Protect yourself.

Our suggestion when trying to find your lost bird or to find a found bird’s owner is to memorize a few distinguishing features about the bird. That can be a certain mark, a broken toenail, a specific phrase they might say, or the color/number of their band. Then ask the person that wants to claim the bird or claims to have the bird to tell you the answers to your questions. Quiz them…be protective of your bird!

PLEASE BEWARE – Do NOT be scammed by someone who is trying to break your heart even further. You can protect yourself. Here are some great rules of thumb to follow:

  • Make sure the person will meet you in person (even if they are out of state)
    Follow this one simple rule and you will avoid 99% of the scam attempts
  • Never wire funds via Western Union, Moneygram, or any other any other wire service – anyone who asks you to do so is a scammer
  • Never give out financial information – bank account number, social security number, eBay/PayPal info, etc.
  • Fake Cashier Checks given to people (rewards) are common, and banks will cash them – YOU WILL RESPONSIBLE when the fake is discovered weeks later
  • Avoid deals involving any type of shipping, or escrow services – Know that ONLY A SCAMMER- will “GUARANTEE” your transaction






Who should I notify about fraud or scam attempts?

  • FTC toll free hotline: 877-FTC-HELP (877-382-4357)
  • FTC online complaint form (
  • Canadian PhoneBusters hotline: 888-495-8501
  • Internet Fraud Complaint Center (
  • Non-emergency number for your local police department

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