Jesse’s Story of the Day

Jesse investigates sick puppies sold online


A Mill Creek family is grieving after having to euthanize their 6-week-old puppy just one day after bringing him home.

Chase Linder and his girlfriend Denise had picked the perfect puppy.

“We got in the car and we were just screaming, like, this is so awesome!” Linder said.  “We were decided on the name right there: Benji. Right on the spot because he looked like a graham cracker.”

Linder found Benji in an ad on the internet and met the sellers in a grocery store parking lot.  He paid the sellers $850 and was handed the puppy and a needle.

“She was saying ‘hey, after two more weeks, give this shot to the dog.’ And that was a big red flag,” Linder explained.  “Why would we need to give this dog a vaccine?”

Just hours after bringing him home and playing in the yard, Benji got sick.

“He was shaking. So we took him over to the new bathroom spot we just set up and kind of let him sit there,” Linder said.  “We gave him some water and he seemed to be better. Then, 30 minutes later, more puking, more shaking.”

Linder rushed him to a veterinarian where the puppy was diagnosed with the deadly parvo virus. With the chances of survival close to zero, the sad choice was made to put Benji down.

“We couldn’t let him go for like, two hours,” Linder explained. “We just stayed in the room and cuddled him and sat with him.”

In just hours, Benji became family. Then, he was gone.  Denise was crushed, while Linder was upset with the sellers.

“I was actually texting them right there,” Linder said.   “That was… it was just a distraught conversation and so I was just trying to be like, ‘Hey, did you know about his? What did you know? They said they knew nothing. But… she wanted to get the dog back.”

The other dog in the ad, a black puppy named Migo, was also put down because it had parvo.

Lisa Drake of Seattle Humane says people should ask for vet records buying any animal, especially a puppy.

“They should be able to provide you with veterinary records, whether or not they’ve seen a veterinarian for a general health check, what sorts of vaccines they’ve received, what those vaccines are and how frequently they’ve been received,” Drake said.

Jenna Pringle from Seattle Humane adds that seeing dogs in their environment before purchase is vital.

“You should be able to meet the parents if you’re getting an animal from a breeder and you should be able to see the environment that they’re raised in,” Pringle explained.  “They should have other pets, for example, that you can see are healthy and happy.”

Linder said the lesson here is always go to a shelter.  I asked Linder if I could help he and his girlfriend get a new puppy, but they said they are not ready right now.

I currently trying to find the sellers of these sick puppies.  If you have recently purchased a sick puppy, please contact me.

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