NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) – Scammers are always watching and waiting says Robyn Householder, president of BBB of Middle Tennessee.

“We all have a very different work schedule than we did two or three years ago, and so it’s a lot easier to bring a new pet into the home,” Householder said. “What you’ve heard me say over and over again, is scammers are nothing more than opportunists. They see us being home more as a wonderful opportunity to take our money.”

Now, innocent Nashvillians are getting dragged into dishonest dealings.

“One of the things we’ve recently seen with a consumer locally was that the scammer was actually using their home address as their business location. I imagine giving some level of credibility that they were local,” explained Householder.

The family notified the BBB and explained the situation.

“We’ve had other consumers showing up at this poor man’s door, wanting to pick up their Shih Tzu that of course doesn’t exist,” Householder said.

Consumers beware, these scammers are specific about payment.

| READ MORE | Latest headlines from Nashville and Davidson County

“They’re going to use either some form of a payment app, they’re going to ask for gift cards, they’re going to ask for wiring money,” she warned.

And before you pay, take a second to follow these key rules.

“Do a reverse lookup of that picture of that puppy and see if it actually exists. Chances are, sadly, you’re gonna see that puppy in thousands of other advertisements. Never buy an animal of any kind, unless you’ve had a chance to meet that puppy.”

⏩ Find more Top Stories from

To do a reverse search, just right-click the picture on the webpage and click “search google for image.” You’ll see your results in a new tab.