You've heard of flipping houses, but how about flipping pets?

LIVINGSTON PARISH, LA (WAFB) - A local animal rights group is hearing reports of pets being flipped for profit. There is a warning out that you should be on your guard.

Volunteers from the Livingston Parish SPCA stop shoppers to talk about the idea of helping local animals in need.

Dogs like Kyra, a one year old purebred border collie that a Livingston SPCA volunteer purchased from a Watson, LA woman for $20. This happened after SPCA workers say the woman obtained Kyra for free on Craigslist.

"She will make contact with the owners and let them know she's interested in the dog," said Michelle Veron with the Livingston SPCA. "She gives a complete sob story, usually concerning her kids birthdays. She obtains the animals from them, usually talking them down to nothing or a very small re-homing fee. And within next morning she has them advertised on Craigslist for sale a substantial re-homing fee; anywhere from $100 to $150."

WAFB tried to locate the woman in question for her take, but a man who identified himself as the woman's brother said she was unavailable.

The folks from the Livingston Parish SPCA and other recognized shelters like CAAWS in Baton Rouge realize animals do change hands frequently, but urge owners to do their research before giving away or taking on pets.

"You must put a re-homing fee with your animal. This assures that anybody that contacts you or has interest in the animal is willing to pay to get that animal, therefore you can almost assure that they're going to provide it with a safe environment," said Veron.

According to Livingston Parish Sheriff Jason Ard, there is nothing illegal with using online sites to acquire an animal for next to nothing and then selling it for a profit. But he, like the workers from the SPCA advises to know exactly what you're getting in to.

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