A family in Glasgow had their hearts broken after their new puppy died just hours after arriving at its new home.
Annemarie bought Angus the Pomeranian crossbreed online as a present for her two daughters aged six and 11 years old. The eldest daughter, Caitlyn, fell in love with Angus immediately.
However, it wasn’t long before he suddenly fell ill.
Vets ran tests and found he parvovirus – a fatal disease – and told Annmarie and her two young daughters their beloved puppy would have to be put to sleep.
Annmarie said the ‘disgusting’ breeders simply ‘disappeared’ as she tried to get in touch with them, while the documents which arrived with the dog turned out to be fake.
She spent £1,000 on vet bills for poor Angus, but Annmarie says the emotional cost of the family’s traumatic ordeal has been far greater.
Explaining what happened, Annemarie said: “I can’t believe I was fooled by these people. I keep asking myself if there was something I could have done differently. I had no idea about parvovirus and how serious it was. It caused us a lot of heartache, to Caitlyn especially.
“Caitlyn had been asking for a dog for years and had been very responsible by doing research into looking after a puppy, what they ate, how to train them. I saw she was ready to help care for a dog so I started looking into it.
“I found the advert for Angus on an online selling site. He was white, fluffy and adorable so I messaged the seller. I now realise I was fed excuses for the breeder to drop Angus to us but it all seemed so legitimate.”
Annmarie shared her story with Glasgow Live as a warning to others about heartless puppy breeders operating in Glasgow and across Scotland.
The Scottish SPCA has supported Annmarie in her appeal to the public as their animal rescue centres hit capacity.
Chief superintendent Mike Flynn said: “Unfortunately the pandemic has seen a rise in the number of puppies being sold. The pups are bred for financial gain with no thought given to the welfare of the puppies or their mums.
“We are dedicated to disrupting the multi-million-pound low-welfare puppy trade. Our undercover special investigations unit rescued over 150 puppies from dealers and ferry ports in 2020.
“Our centres have hit capacity and we desperately need the support of the animal-loving Scottish public so that they don’t let animals suffer.
“We will continue to be here for every person and animal, like Angus, that needs us in all communities across Scotland.
“Every single person who signs up to support us with a monthly donation will be making an impact and will allow us to rescue animals like Angus.”
The Scottish SPCA receives no government funding and is entirely reliant on donations from the public.
To find out more about the #DontLetAnimalsSuffer campaign and becoming a member of the Scottish SPCA, visit www.scottishspca.org/puppy.