Bought a Sick Pet Store Puppy? What You Can Do

Many people unknowingly buy a sick puppy from a New Hampshire pet store or breeder. If this happens to you, there are things you can do to help prevent it from happening to other people and puppies. Contact us if you need help.

The Puppy “Lemon law”

According to New Hampshire law, no dog can be sold before eight weeks old. If the dog is “found to be diseased,” the purchaser has two business days to return the animal for a full refund or replacement.

1. Contact the Better Business Bureau. You can file a complaint online with the Better Business Bureau. This is an important step because Better Business Bureau reports stay on file and are available for others to read.

2. Contact the New Hampshire attorney general and file a Consumer Complaint. You can file your complaint electronically or by printing and mailing a form.

3. Contact animal control. Animal control in the town/city where the pet store is located may not have jurisdiction over the store, but it’s good to alert them to your situation. Animal control officers are busy people, so be prepared to leave a message.

  • Manchester Animal Control: (603) 792-5461
  • Nashua Animal Control (Bob Langis):
    (603) 594-3500
  • Hudson Animal Control:
    (603) 886-6011 or
    (603) 889-PETS (7387) or
  • Lebanon Police: (603) 448-1212
4. Contact the New Hampshire Department of Agriculture and make a complaint. Call (603) 271-3551 (8:00 am–4:00 pm, M-F) or send email to the following three addresses:
  • Dr. Nathan Harvey, Assistant State Veterinarian:
  • Anna Richards, Veterinary Technician:
  • Pet vendor complaints:

5. Contact the media. Local news outlets are always looking for human/animal interest stories. Reach out to New Hampshire newspapers, radio stations, and television channels via “tip lines” or contact an investigative reporter directly. Provide as much documentation as you can (photos, video, receipts). 

  • To Contact WMUR, call (603) 669-9999 or send email to
  • To contact the Union Leader call (603) 668-4321 ext. 757 or email
  • To contact NHPR, call (603) 228-8910 or email

7. File a complaint with the breed club or registry. If your puppy came with breed registration papers, contact the registry. You might also contact the parent breed club for the breed of your dog.

8. Report it to the Humane Society of the United States. If you purchased a sick puppy from a store or suspected puppy mill, report it to the Humane Society of the United State’s puppy mill team.

Leave an Online Review!

You can help other consumers by reviewing the pet store or breeder online and describing your experience. Yelp and Google Reviews are the most popular review sites.