There are unscrupulous people that search for “Free to a Good Home” ads so they can get their hands on a free dog, cat or kitten, gerbils, hamsters, etc. Some of them will sell it to a research laboratory for animal testing. Others will sell it to a Class B dealer who will in turn sell it to a research laboratory. Other free pets, depending on their size, can be used to either train “Bully Breeds” to fight or used as food for snakes.
In the instances of offering a free pit bull, they often are scooped up by those who will train them to fight. Pit bulls are already subjected to abuse but it's just easier by the fact that Craig's List allows people to offer them for free.
Craig's List warns of this potential when you post your “Pet” ad. They know “free” animals can pay a hefty price yet they continue to allow people to post them. The majority of the public have no clue about this dirty little secret. Animal lovers like myself, have pleaded with Craigs List to not allow them yet it falls on deaf ears.
There are legitimate people who try to find free pets; their argument is that they would rather spend the money ON the pet not acquiring a pet. But, often times it's people who cannot afford a pet and then the animal suffers because it cannot get the veterinary help that it needs. In the case of puppies, without their vaccinations, they often develop parvo and die. Anyone who cannot pay a small “rehoming fee” most times cannot afford the pet in the first place and certainly will not be able to afford annual vaccinations and trips to the vet as needed.
There should be a minimum rehoming fee amount required to post on Craig's List. It's time that Craig's List took responsibility for what is posted and not allow the potential abuse that "FREE" pets invites.