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Animal Services warns of "lost pets" scam

Lost dog flyer posted by an intersection outdoors
July 13, 2023


Scammers are after distraught pet owners in Cobb who post on social media they've lost their pets.  The scammers call pretending to be an Animal Services supervisor and say they have found the missing pet and it is injured. They demand payment before they will release the pet.

Please remember Animal Services will never demand payment over the phone to release a found pet.  There may be a small fee once the pet's owner comes to the shelter, but county officers will never ask for payment before that.

The scammers can spoof the phone number to make it appear on caller ID that the call is coming from Cobb Animal Services.  And they use the name of our current shelter manager when they call.  

Animal Services Director Steve Hammond says the shelter has received multiple calls from victims and feels bad for them.  He says it makes them suspicious of legitimate calls from the shelter.

"It makes it difficult for us, but if we do end up finding those animals, then the owners will have received two calls," Hammond said.  "We're upset with it because it takes away from the good work our team is doing every day."