CHICOPEE, Mass. (WWLP) – With National Puppy Day being celebrated Thursday, many consumers may still be navigating online for a dog of their own. However, caution comes with shopping for a puppy, as there has been a rise in the number of people tricked into falling for a fraudulent pet purchase.

According to Better Business Bureau (BBB) 2022 Scam Tracker Risk Report, pets were the most common type of purchase used to perpetrate online scams. Data found on shows Massachusetts has 34 reported puppy scams with a total money loss of $66,850 statewide through last year.

If you are on the hunt for a dog, BBB recommends the following to avoid any online scams:

  • Visit the seller – responsible breeders and reputable rescues are happy to offer you a tour and let you see the available puppies in person.
  • Check references – read online reviews and talk to other people who have purchased pets from the place you are considering making sure the seller is trustworthy.
  • Look for website warning signs – fake puppy sale sites look legitimate because they steal content from other websites. An easy way to spot a duplicate site: copy a line of text from the website and paste it into a search engine.
  • Select on-site – rather than relying on pictures to pick your perfect pet and waiting for a breeder to send them to you, visit the site and make your choice in person.
  • Use a credit card – this offers additional protection if you purchase online. Asking a customer to pay by wire transfer or prepaid card is illegal, and any breeder that pressures you to do so is most likely a scam.

If you are already the owner of a furry four-legged friend, send your photos to

Below you will find some of our 22News team members showing their unconditional love to their puppies on this day.