Lost Pet Phone Scam

​​Sacramento County residents are urged to exercise caution and be aware of a distressing scam targeting pet owners in the area. Scammers have been contacting pet owners, falsely claiming that their lost pets are in the care of Bradshaw Animal Shelter and require emergency surgery. The scammers then typically demand payment for the purported surgical procedures. 

Bradshaw Animal Shelter will never call pet owners to request money for any type of surgical intervention and will never ask for any financial information over the phone. 

The scam may appear to be very convincing, as scammers have been utilizing caller ID spoofing, making it appear as if the calls are coming from the legitimate phone numbers associated with Bradshaw Animal Shelter. This deceptive technique may mislead pet owners into thinking that they are receiving a genuine call from the shelter. 

To avoid falling victim to this scam, Bradshaw Animal Shelter advises the public to adhere to the following precautions:

  • Never Share Financial Information: Bradshaw Animal Shelter will never ask for credit card information or any type of payment over the phone. If someone contacts you claiming to be from the animal shelter and requests payment, it is likely a scam.
  • Be Wary of Caller ID Spoofing: Scammers may manipulate caller ID to make it appear as if the call is coming from Bradshaw Animal Shelter. Even if the number seems legitimate, exercise caution. 
  • Recognize Legitimate Contact from Bradshaw Animal Shelter: If Bradshaw Animal Shelter legitimately contacts you about a lost pet, staff will ask you to come reclaim your pet in person at the animal shelter, located at 3839 Bradshaw Rd, Sacramento. Staff will also provide you with an Animal ID number which will begin with an A and be followed by six digits, such as A123456. This unique identifier can be used to track your pet through the shelter's system. Staff will never request payment over the phone. 
  • Verification of Animal ID: To verify the legitimacy of the Animal ID provided, the public can call 311 or 916-875-4311 if outside of the unincorporated County.
  • Report Suspicious Activity: If you believe you have been targeted or have encountered any suspicious activity related to lost pets and monetary demands, please report it immediately by calling the Sacramento County Sheriff’s Office non-emergency phone line: 916-874-5115. 

The public is encouraged to share this information widely to ensure that pet owners are informed and protected from falling victim to this scam. 

Frequently Asked Questions: 

Yes. If your pet is microchipped with your information or has identification tags with your information, staff from Bradshaw Animal Shelter will attempt to contact you directly to let you know that your pet is at the animal shelter. However, shelter staff will never ask you for any sort of payment over the phone and will ask you to come in person to Bradshaw Animal Shelter to reclaim your lost pet.​​​

All lost pets that are currently at the animal shelter are listed on our Lost and Found Pets page.  ​Additionally visit 24petconnect to view all dogs or 24petconnect to view all cats.​

The public can also come in person during the shelter’s open hours, Tuesday-Sunday from 12 pm - 5pm (Wednesdays 12 pm - 6pm), to look for their pet. ​​​

Microchip your pet and keep the information up to date when you move or change phone numbers, and make sure your pet is wearing an appropriately fitted collar with identification tags.​​​

We do not currently have information about how these scammers are operating, but we believe that they may be targeting individuals who post their lost pets on social media along with their phone numbers.​​

Come in person to the animal shelter to confirm that your pet is there and to speak directly to staff. Never give any financial information over the phone to someone claiming to have your pet.​​​

Please report suspicious phone calls by calling the Sacramento County Sheriff’s Office non-emergency phone line: 916-874-5115.