Family Life

Watch: THIS is why you should think twice before buying a puppy online

It's no secret that we are a nation of animal lovers.

Our four-legged friends are very much part of the family and our children's best friends.

If you're looking to expand the family or get a pet for the first time, this is why you should think twice before looking online.

The Irish Pet Advertising Advisory Group (IPAAG) has launched a powerful video that shows how easy it is to be tricked by bad breeders.

The footage shows how pictures can manipulate the reality of the suffering the puppies are actually enduring behind the scenes.

The video and #PuppyDotCon is being released as part of the campaign, to educate the public to the dangers of responding to those online animal advertisements.

By all means, IPAAG encourages you to give an animal a second chance and to adopt them from a reputable animal welfare organisation.

But they do recognise that more people than ever are looking online when they decide to get a pet.


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If you're going to shop online – the animal welfare body recommends to do your research and keep an eye out for red flags.

Do your homework and be armed with the information required before making any decision, and if you have any doubt – walk away. 

Gordon, a dad from Dublin was a victim of this when they bought a puppy from an online advert.

The pup was a gift for his daughter who just started secondary school. 


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“My daughter suffers from anxiety,” Gordon said. “We thought having a puppy would help her make friends—sharing photos and videos, bringing it around school to collect her.”

Things started off well, but they quickly soured a few days later when the puppy's health rapidly deteriorated.  The vet diagnosed the pup with parvovirus, a viral infection that is often fatal to puppies.

Despite emergency medical intervention, she didn't survive and Gordon was left with a bill over €1,300, a devastated family, and no puppy.

Usually, puppies are vaccinated against parvovirus by a vet from six weeks of age before they are old enough to be sold. Gordon was given a fake vaccination card when he bought the puppy.

Avoid the devastation and heartache of getting caught out by these types of breeders, do your research and check out your local shelters. 

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