Report: #1134885

Complaint Review: Lagotto Club Of America - Internet

  • Submitted:
  • Updated:
  • Reported By: Lagottos — Santa Rosa California
  • Lagotto Club Of America


Lagotto Club Of America Mel Sykes, Adrienne Perry, Melanie Steel, Kathleen Correll, Jackie Barbieri, Lisa Sobon, Sandy Mignogna Club full of scammers, inferior dogs and misinformation Internet

*Consumer Comment: Just the facts

*Consumer Comment: Il Granaio dei Malatesta -Lagotto

*Consumer Comment: Going with an Italian breeder is not without issues

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Buyer beware! This club is a rip off and a joke and is run by bullies. They sell inferior dogs for outrageous sums of money. They have a very sketchy Code of Ethics and do not make their members adhere to it. There are breeders that are breeding dysplastic dogs, dogs with poor health and dogs with extremely bad temprements. Many of the dogs they are producing have aggression issues and fear issues. This is due to their poor breeding practices. There are known bloodlines with issues and instead of removing those from the breeding programs, they want to make their money back, so they keep breeding them. Many have one male and breed over and over, keep females and breed back to their father so they don't have to invest in another male. This is creating genetic issues as well as crazy dogs. All in the name of the almighty dollar. They could care less about the effect it is having on the breed. 

They keep the club small, so that they corner the market for US sales. I spoke to many of them and they initially seemed more interested in telling me what was wrong with everyone else's dogs as opposed to telling me what was right about theirs. It feels like a dog version of the Mean Girls. They will put down any other breeders in the interest of making a sale for themselves. It is disgraceful. Many have no idea how to treat people. They were rude to say the least. Not all of them, but honestly most in the US were hard to take. There were two breeders that were very helpful and informative, but neither of them lived in the US. 

Another thing about them, they make you submit a payment to the club with your application. If they don't approve you, you don't get your money back. That is stealing by any means and another example of the constitution of this club. They care about the money. If you sell your puppies below a certain price point they might "suggest" that you raise your prices to keep the prices high. If you don't then they can threaten to revoke your membership.  Many also sell most of their puppies on a contract that can only be described as a pyramid scheme. They force you to breed your dogs and take half the litter, over and over forever. 

They also tolerate brokering. In fact, one of board of directors, Jackie Barbieri is a puppy broker. She lives in Missouri which is the puppy mill capitol of the country and she sells dozens of litters each year, some born to her dogs, and many not. She and her partner travel to Italy and buy entire litters of substandard puppies from farmers. These puppies are not from health tested parents in almost 100% of the cases. She purchases them at a substantial discount and then brings them to the US, keeps some to breed and puts a $3000 price tag on the ones she rejects and profits $2500 per pup. She NEVER gives registration papers with any of her dogs. I understand not giving them for pets, but when you purchase a dog for breeding, if you comply with all the health testing and terms of the contract, what is the reasoning? Is this to keep them breeding (see pyramid scheme).  How is this ethical ? (talking to you Adrienne Perry, Mel Sykes, Lisa Sobon, Kathleen Correll, Melanie Steele,  Sandy Mignogna, Jacki Barbieri and the ethics commitee)? How does the club not only tolerate this, but condone it to the point that they make her a club officer??? I suppose it is fine if one of them are breaking the rules. What sort of club does this? If they are supposed to be protecting the breed, how can this be good? She is selling puppies from untested parents. Sure she guarantees them. If they are severely dysplastic, she will give you another $500 puppy she imported and still makes a huge profit. How is this more acceptable that having your own dogs, not health testing them and having puppies? It is actually worse and shame on the Lagotto Club Of America for tolerating it or looking the other way. This is just one example, though a glaring one, of how they operate. If anyone rocks the boat and questions a club member's ethics they are immediately chastised or turned into an outcast with gossip. 

This is a club that follows it's own rules only selectively. I would NEVER purchase a puppy from one of these breeders. The club is also advocating for AKC recognition. Most rare breed clubs fight to keep their breeds from being AKC. Once they are AKC, the puppy mills will get ahold of them and ruin the breed. Oh, well I guess with many of the club members, they are part of the problem already, so it will just make it easier for them.  

 My suggestion is to either get a puppy from Italy, or get a puppy from a breeder is the US who loves the breed and isn't a part of their scam. You can pay less than $3000, for a much better quality puppy.  




This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 03/30/2014 03:15 PM and is a permanent record located here: https://www.ripoffreport.com/reports/lagotto-club-of-america/internet/lagotto-club-of-america-mel-sykes-adrienne-perry-melanie-steel-kathleen-correll-jackie-1134885. The posting time indicated is Arizona local time. Arizona does not observe daylight savings so the post time may be Mountain or Pacific depending on the time of year. Ripoff Report has an exclusive license to this report. It may not be copied without the written permission of Ripoff Report. READ: Foreign websites steal our content

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#1 Consumer Comment

Just the facts

AUTHOR: Doug R - ()

POSTED: Wednesday, January 07, 2015

I purchased Lagottos from both Lisa Sobon and Jacki Barbieri and found the statements made to be untrue and misleading. First, neither breeder even suggested to us that we join the Lagotto Club of America. We purchased dogs born in America from Italian parents and we have the paperwork confirming the DNA analysis,hip evaluation report, OFA eye clearance report, juvenile epilepsy test and congenital cardiac database report for the parents. Both suggested personal visits and I was extremely impressed with Jacki Barbieri's farm and her stock. She has 8 sires and 8 bitches. Lisa Sobon has two sires and 2 bitches, so that's hardly an operation. She is one of the most caring, loving breeders I've met and, in fact, hosts an annual Lagotto reunion at her family winery (with swimming pool for the dogs to enjoy!).

With respect to diversified stock, our 2 1/2 year old was born to Lisa's b***h and Jacki's sire, who was flown from Missouri to California to achieve this. What is curious about this Ripoff Report and the prior one is that both advocate sourcing your Lagotto from Italy. That might be an interesting adventure if you speak Italian, but I would urge care from a legal perspective. Not only would it be prohibitively expensive to engage in breach of contract litigation there, but also their legal system is far slower and more tedious than ours (and I live in California!). These Ripoff Reports sure sound like the work of importers, based here in the U.S., with inadequate personal breeding backgrounds but loads of import experience. So who do you believe? People who most of us can converse with and who actually breed the dogs, or importers who simply arrange for their transportation? Try returning a dog from an importer if you aren't satisfied.

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#2 Consumer Comment

Il Granaio dei Malatesta -Lagotto

AUTHOR: Lagotto Lover - ()

POSTED: Monday, June 09, 2014

Do NOT buy from Monica Benelli of Il Granaio dei Malatesta.  We got a sick lagotto puppy.  We've spent thousands of dollars trying to treat issues that she should have known about.



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#3 Consumer Comment

Going with an Italian breeder is not without issues

AUTHOR: Lagotto Lover - ()

POSTED: Monday, June 02, 2014

 After we had heard of an Italian breeder (who happened to be a vet) shipping a parasitic worm-filled Lagotto puppy to AZ, we were naturally cautious about purchasing a Lagotto from outside the US.  When we did our research, Monica Benelli at Il Granaio dei Malatesta in Italy came highly recommended to us and her contract stated that she guaranteed a healthy dog.  In hindsight, it was incredibly foolish of us to think that her own contract meant anything to her.  

Only after we had signed the contract and paid in-full via wire transfer and as she was putting the puppy on the plane in Italy for an overseas shipment, she told us (in an e-mail) that the dog had giardia and that giardia is rampant in all Italian kennels.  

The lagotto puppy arrived to us two days later with a significant infection.  Over the course of several weeks, the dog would get slightly better and then considerably worse.  We spent $1500 on vet visits, diagnostic tests and medications to treat the giardia.  (Not to mention considerable time cleaning up and sanitizing the diarrhea and vomit)  Unlike normal Giardia, this strain seemed particularly resilient.   

Additionally, our puppy had behavioral issues and fear that became gradually more pronounced.  A Behaviorist diagnosed him with severe Anxiety Disorder (which seems to be increasing in prevalence in the Lagotto breed).

Monica has been very difficult to work with regarding this matter.  She has accused our professional trainer (CPDT- KA), our veterinarian (DVM) and our behaviorist (PhD, DVM) of all being wrong and unknowledgeable.  

I have serious concerns about the welfare of all of the animals in her care.  I would never choose to work with her as we find her incredibly unprofessional and irresponsible.  Furthermore, given our dog's  mental health and in talking to other owners with fearful/anxious Lagotti, I have concerns about the dogs descended from IGDM lines.

You can learn more about our dog, about our issues with Monica Benelli, and about the health of dogs from Il Granaio dei Malatesta on our website at ilgranaiodeimalatesta.  You may also contact us directly from the website. 


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