• The woman had put up her dog for adoption as she did not have time to spend with him
  • The man promised to send videos of the dog adapting to the new home
  • He later reportedly demanded 5000 yuan (about $719) for returning the dog safely

A man in China, who adopted a woman's dog pretending to be an animal lover, later demanded ransom from her by threatening to kill the canine.

The woman, identified only as Chen from Shenzhen in southern China, had put up her dog for adoption on a second-hand trading platform as she did not have time to spend with him.

On the platform, she came across a man from Huizhou city, who promised to adopt her pet labrador, Duobao, and also to send her videos of him adapting to the new home, Benwix reported.

The man then convinced Chen by sending her 8.8 yuan (US$1.3) as a goodwill gesture, before picking up the dog. It wasn't clear when the incident took place.

However, Chen did not receive any photos or videos of her pet as promised. The next day, she received a text message from the man saying he sold Duobao to a butcher shop in Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region, and demanded 5,000 yuan, (approximately $719) if the dog has to be safely returned.

Chen did not pay the ransom, and when she went to check the man at his residence, she could not find him or her dog. She then reported it to the police, who told her they have received similar complaints against the same man.

Meanwhile, the man reportedly admitted to selling the dog to butchers, but denied extorting money from Chen. "The dog is mine as I adopted it, it's normal to sell it for money," he said.

However, as the amount paid by the man is much lower than a dog's market price, Chen is entitled to get the canine back, lawyers opined, according to reports.

"The 8.8 yuan sent by the man is a gift rather than being a regular payment for a deal as the amount is far lower than the dog's market price. When the man threatened to sell the dog to a meat shop, Chen was entitled to ask for its return," Chai Xin, a lawyer from Dentons Law Firm said, as reported by the South China Morning Post.

Border Collie, Dog, Pet
Representative image of a dog. Katrin B./Pixabay

Meanwhile, the cruel scam has sparked outrage on social media, with people raising concerns about the legal procedure for pet adoption in China.

"I pray for Duobao, meanwhile, I also hope the man will receive a penalty," a man said. "The man adopted Duobao so easily, but isn't there any legal procedure for pet adoption?" another asked.

According to Chinese law, pets can be adopted after registration with local authorities.