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POLL: Should there be a maximum price for selling cats and dogs online?

By Louise Glen

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Heather Swinton of Inverneess Cat Rescue and her catMeow Meow...Picture: Gary Anthony..
Heather Swinton of Inverneess Cat Rescue and her catMeow Meow...Picture: Gary Anthony..

Readers have been telling us about their concerns about cats and dogs selling for hugely increased prices online during the pandemic.

We want to know if there is a way to bring to end inflated costs for pets bought online.

That is why we are asking if there should be a maximum price for pets sold on social media or online marketplaces.

With some pet owners paying more than £1500 for puppies, that before the lockdown were sold for £500, and other buying pets who were flea ridden and had to be put to sleep - we want to know if you think there is a price that is too high.

Heather Swinton, of Inverness Cat Rescue, reminded anyone thinking of buying a pet that paying hundreds of pounds may not secure a healthy cat or kitten.

On websites such as Gumtree, the price for a kitten in the Highlands has been reaching as high as £700.

Mrs Swinton said: “For the first time since we started the rescue centre we have a waiting list of 30 people for adult cats, and we have stopped taking names for kittens.

“We cannot keep up with the demand. The lockdown has really changed the way people are behaving towards animals.

“On Gumtree I have seen for myself the rising prices for cats, and we need to remind people that while they might be paying huge prices for the animals, it does not mean they will be fit and healthy – serious questions need to be asked of the sellers.

“There is no such thing as a ‘half Maine coon’, or a ‘Siamese cross’, they are just cats – do not be fooled.

“I work part-time in a vet’s practice and I have seen for myself the devastation when a kitten is brought in and it cannot be saved as it is just filled with worms.

“People need to ask questions before they buy a kitten, such as has it been wormed? Is it over eight weeks old? Has it been checked by a vet? Can you see it at home or with its mother? Was it raised in a house?”

Let us know what you think.

You can read our original story here.

If you have bought online - what is your experience - email louise.glen@hnmedia.co.uk, and tell us your story.

Do you want to respond to this article? If so, click here to submit your thoughts and they may be published in print.

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