The Waco Police Department is warning future pet owners about a website they believe is not legitimate.
The website called Flexible Bulldogs advertises English bulldogs displaying pictures of puppies with their price.
"They're going after the heartstrings of tugging on people because these are precious pictures,” Waco Police Department Spokesman Sgt. Patrick Swanton.” "We believe at this point, that this is a fake website, meaning that the puppies are not real, they're not for sale."
According to Swanton, the police department received two phone calls from out of state regarding the business. One person called to verify the Waco address the business provided, but police said that address doesn’t exist.
"It is not a good address in our Waco city limits. It is not a business that we know of here in the Waco area," Swanton said.
Another caller explained their parents had purchased a dog from the site.
"We have one couple tell us they have some elderly parents who have sent some money in and they have not gotten the puppy,” Swanton said.
When prospective customers of the site want to inquire about a puppy, the only way to contact the seller is by filling out a form with contact information. The site also has a required field for the name of the puppy wanted and how soon the puppy is needed.
Police contacted the company on Thursday morning but as of Friday had not received a response from them. Swanton added police has not received any indication that Flexible Bulldogs was a legitimate business.
News Channel 25 filled out the form specifying a news reporter wanted to speak with them regarding concerns about the company being legitimate. A few hours later, Flexible Bulldogs sent an email with information about one of the dogs listed and a contact phone number.
In the email, the company wrote the customer would receive an invoice with indications on how to pay, which could be made by credit/debit card or cash transfer at a MoneyGram or Walmart store.
On Friday afternoon, News Channel 25 contacted the number listed and asked whether it would be possible to visit the business in Waco. The representative said that would not be a problem. However, he did not provide the address instead kept asking questions regarding the reporter’s name and email.
When News Channel 25 asked whether the representative wanted to say to customers to reassure them Flexible Bulldogs was a legitimate business, the representative hung up.
The Better Business Bureau said there were no reviews of a business under the name of Flexible Bulldogs.
Waco Police recommend when residents want to make an online purchase to look for someone to contact and real addresses. In addition, they advice for people to contact the BBB and do extensive research online before sending money.
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