After the tragic news surfaced of a puppy bought near Uxbridge with fake veterinary papers that had to be put down, there have been more reports of unscrupulous puppy dealing around the Hillingdon area.
Getwestlondon reported last Friday (September 16) on George the Labrador Spaniel cross, which fell ill shortly after she was bought in Denham Green near Uxbridge.
The family who bought her, who asked not to be named, were devastated when they discovered George's vaccination card was fake and the puppy had contracted the deadly parvovirus, and would probably have to be put down.
Since the story of George emerged, two other dog buyers have come forward believing their dogs have come from the same unscrupulous seller.
George was put down on Friday ( September 16).
An online campaign has since been launched in a desperate attempt to stop these puppies being traded without regard to their welfare.
'We fell in love with her straight away'
A 17-year-old girl from Aylesbury got in touch after seeing the tragic story about George.
She told getwestlondon : “We found an ad on a website for Collie Labrador puppies, we called the number listed on the site and he messaged us an address in Denham.
“Me, my sister and cousin met him in Denham Green. He came out to our car with the puppy walking alongside him, we fell in love with her straightaway.”
She met the buyer on Friday, September 9, the same day George was bought from the same place.
The puppy, named Lola, quickly became sick with diarrhoea, but the new owners put it down to the puppy's nervousness.
It quickly became clear that this wasn't the case when the dog became lifeless and started bleeding, so the owners took her to the vet.
She was diagnosed with the contagious parvovirus and the vet prescribed antibiotics and a rehydration powder.
'She died in my sister's arms'
The girl said: “During the night she got weaker and passed away in the early hours in my sister's arms. We were absolutely heartbroken and tried getting in touch with the guy that sold her to us.
“He kept telling us he would meet us to give our money back but when it came to it he said he was in Manchester.”
The family managed to get in contact with the seller on a different number, pretending to be a new buyer and arranged to meet up a second time.
They said they confronted the seller who denied the first puppy was ill.
The young buyer said: “All of us being such animal lovers they couldn't leave the second puppy with him so they took her and bought her back to our home in Aylesbury.”
But again the puppy, called Lucky, fell ill with parvovirus, and was put down on Friday night (September 16).
Online campaign launched
An online petition has since been launched calling on sites that sell puppies to change their policies.
The campaign, which is on change.org and the Government's petition site, calls on websites to require proof of address from the seller and for the parents of the puppy to be seen.
Posting on the petition, one supporter said they had seen someone dealing puppies in the area, and had witnessed a man kicking the puppies.
Another dog buyer has also got in contact to say they had bought a different breed of dog from Denham, under suspicious circumstances.
'Puppies are being treated like scrap'
The RSPCA says puppies are being traded in the UK "like scrap with no regard for their welfare, or even if they live or die".
A spokesman has issued advice on buying a puppy from a breeder.
They said: “We always encourage people thinking of getting a dog to first consider adopting from one of the many rescue organisations.
“There are so many wonderful dogs patiently waiting for their home in kennels and foster homes.
“It's very important when searching for a breeder and a puppy to do lots of research and take time over choosing the right dog for your family and circumstances.
“We also advise prospective buyers to see the puppy with its mother, ask lots of questions, check paperwork and documentation and to visit more than once.
“This is practically impossible to do if buying a puppy abroad or over the internet so, for that reason, we would advise buyers to be very careful.”
More information is available on the RSPCA website www.getpuppysmart.com to help buyers.