Buying a dog on the Internet

Buying dogs over the Internet and from abroad, a good idea?

The dog trade is booming. Especially small dog breeds are in such demand that breeding in Switzerland cannot come close to following this trend. This can also be seen in the import figures of Switzerland. From 7000 annually in 2008 to 21,000 in 2012 and 28,000 in 2019, Corona has led to 36,000 imported dogs in 2021.

Unfortunately, one also assumes an increasing dark figure of countless, illegally imported dogs. A worrying trend, especially since dogs are also imported, which originate from rabies countries, but have not received a rabies vaccination! These dogs have usually never been examined by a veterinarian, yet they are sometimes delivered with falsified papers (pet passport) and falsified health certificates.

We are particularly feeling this trend in the region, because the agglomerations are the target area for these imports. The trendy dogs are especially popular here as a 'fashion accessory'. Unfortunately, dog buyers often do not inform themselves enough about what they are getting into when buying a dog.

According to our experience, many new dog owners are severely overwhelmed as soon as they realize what all is involved in dog ownership. Many illegal dogs do not have a mandatory microchip, are not properly vaccinated and unfortunately very often not healthy.

Although the buyer abroad may have paid 'only' sFr. 850.- instead of the usual sFr. 2500.- in Switzerland (from a reputable breeding), he often got a sick, often barely viable puppy. Quickly the healing costs start to accumulate. Unfortunately, even with a lot of money, not all congenital defects can be completely corrected. 

Most of the time, the new owners fall in love with their dogs very quickly, so it is almost impossible to return them to the sellers. If, however, a return is attempted, one must then realize, however, mostly that this is no longer possible at all, since there are of course no guarantees in the illegal dog trade.

However, Swiss customs investigators are now taking tougher action against the illegal dog trade. Recently, a case of illegal dog trafficking involving 230 puppies was uncovered. The dogs were imported via Hungarian traders from Eastern Europe through unmanned border crossings in the canton of St. Gallen. The deal earned the trader sFr. 100,000 in the short term. However, he is now being prosecuted.

The puppies, which come from mass production centers in Hungary, Romania, the Czech Republic or Slovakia, are separated from their mothers much too early, and thus cannot develop healthily. The parent animals are kept in mass breeding stables that are contrary to animal welfare.

The Swiss Animal Protection (STS) has checked last year 19 Internet sites with dog advertisements on your seriousness, only 10% of the 1377 advertisements are to be classified as serious! More and more new suppliers are entering the market, the business is attractive and promises a profit of at least sFr. 500.- per puppy, according to STS there are traders who make up to sFr 70'000.- profit per month.

So you should choose the origin of your dog very well, because only a healthy puppy really gives pleasure. If you take enough time, you will certainly find a healthy puppy of the desired breed from domestic breeding. If the dog is obtained from abroad, it is essential to take the time and personally visit the selected breeding in advance.

This information is in no way intended to spoil your pleasure in choosing your new 'dream dog', but only to help prevent great disappointment for you and suffering for the animals. If you are unsure about a purchase situation, we will be happy to help you with advice. In addition, there are also tips on the Internet

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