ZIONSVILLE, Ind. — A Zionsville man says he lost a thousand bucks for a puppy that never arrived. The Local Better Business Bureau said this is not a new problem.

“This one was like I’m good; I’m happy here,” Grant Jenkins said while holding his son Liam’s new puppy.

Bob the pug brings joy to their family, especially after they say they fell victim to a puppy scam.

“Found a website, did a little bit of just quick research on who they were, made contact, we communicated via text and email, one phone call,” Jenkins explained.

Jenkins said they found a dog, then sent money to the suspected owner over Zelle. It was a deposit of $500 then another $500 to transport the pup to Indiana.

Unfortunately, he won’t get the money back.

“No, No,” Jenkins said. “With Zelle it’s pretty much gone.”

This purported breeder told Grant the puppy was coming via a Wisconsin transport company. But, when Grant called that company, he realized it was a scam.

“Then once I did that final deposit, then they said you owe another $1500 for pet insurance that’ll be refunded to you at the time of arrival,” Jenkins said. “I said, ‘no.'”

The BBB said online pet scams are prevalent. It urges people to only pay for online purchases with a credit card.

“You want to avoid wiring money, using cash apps, gift cards, even nowadays cryptocurrency because those payment methods don’t offer a way to get your money back,” Jennifer Adamany, Director of Communication of BBB Serving Central Indiana, said.

It’s also a good idea to reverse image search a photo online. We found the same image of the pug Grant thought he was adopting on numerous websites under different pet names.

The BBB added people should research the common cost of the dog they’re hoping to purchase because sometimes deals are too good to be true. Also, check the domain of the website the dog is posted on and be wary if the page was recently created.

The BBB said it is always a good idea to visit the facility where you are purchasing the dog if possible, otherwise, at least get a live video.

In the long run, Liam got his puppy but the Jenkins wanted to spare others from the heartache of a puppy scam, which is why they’re sharing this warning.