Bring me the puppies!

Anytime a holiday rolls around, especially Valentine's Day sadly the below scenario takes place but it's not as common for the Yakima County Sheriff's Office to bring it to the community's attention, yet here we are. Oh, 2021, I was hoping maybe we would move away from this.

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First off, I get it, a cute puppy with a great idea, bring me home and surprise the family. Take a deep breath and before dropping a $250 deposit into some random person's account. Have you checked out what's available at the Yakima Humane Society? There are also a handful of sites on social media that rescue animals that aren't being taken care of or surrendered that are in need of a loving home. You might end up spending the same amount or less in the end BUT you'll get to see your puppy or kitten at the same time you pay!

  • Southern Heart Animal Rescue
  • Wags to Riches Animal Rescue and Sanctuary
  • Yakima Valley Pet Rescue

The name you need to be wary of currently is Sandy Barber, she has been reported multiple times for basically stealing people's money and was on the local Facebook group Yakima Valley | Buy Sell Trade | Event Network.

The scammer is asking for a $250.00 deposit to reserve a puppy. The remaining $300.00 would be paid when the purchaser tries to pick up the puppy. The would-be purchaser is asked to pay by a cash app called Zelle or ApplePay.

After the money is received, they ask for even more money for shots or vet visits but at no point have you seen the puppy in person and when you attempt to set-up a meet-up she works pretty hard to convince you she is legit, even offering up her license as proof she's real, she's not and she won't show it to you anyway. At this point, she turns into a ghost. I also see in the comments she goes by another name Sally as well.

This is what the Yakima County Sheriff's Office suggests you do if you come across something like this.

Buy a puppy from a reliable source, actually go see the puppies, talk to the breeder, ask for references, or just rescue a puppy from a local pet rescue or animal shelter. If it is too good to be true, it probably is a scam. Report online fraud to the Federal Trade Commission 877-FTC-HELP or

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