Missing dogs turning up for sale on Facebook in Milwaukee area

NOW: Missing dogs turning up for sale on Facebook in Milwaukee area

MILWAUKEE (CBS 58) -- An alert to dog owners -- this week we have seen an alarming number of dogs go missing in our area and then wind up for sale on Facebook.

Police have taken reports, but so far can't stop what seems to be a growing network of underground dog sales.

Marty's disappearance was a heartbreaker for his family.

"My mom, like I said, she was worried sick," said Leah Benoit, Marty's owner.

Their pup slipped out the door Tuesday and turned up, shockingly, online. 

Posts on a Facebook group "Milwaukee Southsiderz" reveal whoever found Marty was selling him. 

Someone asks "How you gonna sell somebody else's dog?"

The reply: "Cuz the owner should of took care of it."

But Marty got lucky. Police found the online seller. He claimed he no longer had the dog. 

A day later, a happy reunion. Marty turned up in a neighbor's yard.

Kristin Wilson was on the case. She runs a nonprofit that helps find missing dogs.

She scours Facebook groups for dogs being "flipped."

“They might give it to their daughter or a cousin who happened to have been looking for one. Some people just keep it for themselves, but a lot of people will flip them and some people hang on to them for the reward,” said Wilson of Billy’s Posse.

Her group, Billy's Posse, has received a high number of requests this week, from the south side of Milwaukee down to Kenosha.

“And we’ve had even in the past where they have a reward but the people actually try to get more out of them. So that’s why rewards are advised against because that can happen, but also if they’re going to make money stealing dogs, they’re going to keep doing it,” said Wilson.

Wilson says it can be tough for police to go after these thieves because it can turn into a he-says-she-says where the dog-napper claims it's their dog.

If you've got proof of purchase, be sure to keep it in a safe place.

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