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Sick dog Couple duped out of over €1,000 by Irish puppy smugglers tell of horror ordeal

The kennel and vet’s fee are expected to reach over st£4,000 (€4,696) and has left the couple struggling to pay their rent.

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Bruce the puppy

Bruce the puppy

Bruce the puppy

A couple have told of their despair after being duped by Irish puppy traffickers, forking out £1,000 (€1,174) for a Cocker Spaniel which became seriously ill and almost died within days.

The London-based pair said they were then threatened when they complained to the woman who they had a bought the dog from at a house in the north of the city.

The dog came with what appeared to be all the relevant paperwork and certificates to show it had its vaccinations.

“It was fine for a couple of days until it started to get sick,” said the woman, who named their new puppy Bruce.

A couple days later the vet said the vaccine certificate was bogus and while it was real, it belonged to a completely different dog.

“They knew the dog wasn't vaccinated and had been illegally trafficked. They found a microchip in the puppy that proved it had come from Ireland.”

“There was no address, the microchip had not been registered but the chip had the code that proved it was done just outside of Dublin.”

“It was far too young to have come over from Ireland at that stage.”

There was more bad news to come when the vet ran tests to discover the pup had an ear infection, fleas and parvovirus, a virus which is often fatal for puppies.

Because the vet knew the dog had been illegally imported it meant the authorities had to be alerted and the dog would have to go into quarantine.

The pup needed constant veterinary treatment for a number of days until it eventually pulled through and was strong enough to be transferred to a quarantine kennels at the couple’s expense.

The kennel and vet’s fee are expected to reach over st£4,000 (€4,696) and has left the couple struggling to pay their rent.

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Bruce the puppy

Bruce the puppy

Bruce the puppy

They had paid for Bruce by bank transfer and went searching on social media to find more about the seller and found the Facebook profile of the woman who had handed over the pup.

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The woman identified by the couple has a wide extended family with relatives based in the UK, Wexford and Dublin and connected to the same clan as the slain gangster Fat Andy Connors.

“We found there were multiple ads for the same puppy at the same location. There was an ad that had just gone up immediately after we had bought the puppy when they had told us it was their last puppy to sell.”

The woman from whom they had bought puppy eventually became aggressive when they complained.

“She sent some very angry voice mails saying we would have to deal with her husband. Things like ‘you don’t know who we are’.”

When they said they would alert the police and SPCA they said the woman seemed “really panicked.”

They felt she didn’t understand the law herself and possibly was manipulated by other people to sell the puppies while insisting they didn’t need a pet passport and the pup had been vaccinated.

The couple had originally spotted an ad on a reputable website in which it was claimed a family pet had a litter of six puppies and there was just one left.

“We called them, and they said do you want to come and get it now. We turned up as a house in north London where this young family came out with lots of children and they were carrying the puppy,” said the woman.

“I thought it was interesting how very young children knew how to assemble a puppy crate. That was quite telling actually and I should have picked up on it at that time.”

She said they felt the sale was quite legitimate because they had the seller’s details and they took the puppy home.

Bruce is the first pet dog the couple have owned and the saga has been traumatic for them.

“We bought this puppy thinking it would be lovely, exciting thing and it was for the first couple of days. We were just so in love with him.

“We were crying for about two or three days straight it was so upsetting we were so worried about him and the financial pressure.”

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