Authorities in the German city of Ahlen recently seized a dog from a family who were unable to pay their debts, including the city’s “dog tax” or “hundesteuer.”
The purebred pug, whose name is Edda, was confiscated by city officials and subsequently sold for €750 (roughly $853) to recoup the funds – on eBay, of all places.
Edda was not the original target for seizure, according to the family.
They said officials wanted to seize the father’s wheelchair, as it was the most expensive thing in the home, but could not do so because it belonged to an employee insurance organization, not the family.
Ahlen city spokesman Frank Merschhaus claims that this is false, calling the assertion a “wicked rumor in an interview with the BBC.
“Aids to guarantee the mobility of people with disabilities are absolutely exempt from being seized as collateral – unlike pets. No enforcement officer would come up with the idea.”
Many people were disgusted and horrified by the decision to seize the poor pug.
3 young kids, the father ill, to seize a dog in those circumstances is an outrage and can only be done by a real rotten burocratic system
— Robbert (@irobbert71) March 1, 2019
They repo dogs in Germany if you dont pay your dog tax and then sell them on Ebay.😮
— Mic Savvy (@MicSavvy) March 1, 2019
Surely this doesn’t happen in a European Country, does it?
— Geoff Lane (@send2gl) March 2, 2019
What a madness! A german town impounded stuff like kitchen appliances from a family with high debt. As that wasn’t enough they also took away the family dog. A pug. Then a communal employee sold the pug on his personal ebay account for the town for 750€ 😱
— neongrau (@n3ongrau) March 2, 2019
Daaaaaamn that’s cold.
— 𝙺𝚊𝚝𝚎𝚕𝚢𝚗 (@katelynveronica) February 28, 2019
Germany confiscated a pug over nonpayment of a dog tax & sold it? WTF.
— Lancer (@ThatTexasLad) March 1, 2019
R E A L L Y? bruh this world is fuckin gross sometimes
— Nunya F Bidnessio (@yaherdmehh) March 2, 2019
Some took the approach of mocking the ridiculousness of seizing an animal for unpaid taxes.
Pay dog tax in time, okay?
Or we take your dawg away and sell it on eBay.
Have a good day, sir.https://t.co/aqcEvVKUVi
— RT (@RT_com) March 2, 2019
Shocking behaviour against someone down on their luck. There but for the grace of God..
Very simple equation – kindergarten standard – do I take the dog or wheelchair or do I leave these poor people to get on with their lives????
Not important to the tax office!
— Graeme George (@GraemeGeorge6) March 1, 2019
Pay your dog tax properly or the city will seize your dog and sell him on eBay. Wait, what? https://t.co/mGh1gTKYdA
— Andrew Ba Tran (@abtran) March 1, 2019
The seizure of Edda for the payment of debts wasn’t the worst part of the whole mess.
Police officer Michaela Jordan, who purchased Edda on eBay after being assured that she was acquired legally and was healthy, later discovered that was anything but the truth.
Jordan was leery of the low asking price for Edda, as purebred pugs often sell for closer to €1500-€2000 ($1500-$2275), but she was assured that everything was in order.
After bringing Edda home, though, Jordan discovered that she was most definitely not healthy.
Edda has since required four surgeries, including one to treat a severe eye infection.
She also required emergency transportation to Duisburg for one of the surgeries, which is over 100 kilometers from where Jordan lives.
Jordan is now suing the city of Ahlen to recoup the costs of Edda’s surgeries, in addition to her original purchase price.
Authorities in Ahlen are now investigating the sale.
A representative of the city told Die Glocke that selling a seized dog, especially via an employee’s personal eBay account, is “not the usual procedure.”