Rehoming advice, Sniffing out sus buyers?

I need advice as a private seller as it pertains to selling animals. I am attempting to privately sell my dwarf boa Alister, the boa in this post:

I have one potential buyer right now but i am paranoid about selling him to someone inexperienced. Alister is a feisty boa. He trusts very slow, bites very fast, (in the face) and needs an owner with experience who understands snake behavior in order to thrive. I made that quite clear in his for sale post on the pet classifieds site i have him on.

But this buyer says he’s looking to breed him, yet has only been keeping for a year… He asked if i had paperwork so that’s promising, but i also don’t know the legitimacy of the site I’m on, or the people it attracts.
I haven’t asked for or seen a setup yet.

To all the breeders on here, how do you sus out potential buyers? Are there red flags to watch out for?

I know things are a bit different as a private seller, I’ve definitely got a lot of sentimental driven concern for him. He was originally my exes boa, but he ditched him with me when we broke up. Since then I’ve been attempting to address his ‘attitude’ issue before rehoming him, and it’s taken two years for me to get him to be curious around me for any length of time. But I’ve also realized that he’s just feisty by nature, and that the majority of his improvement has more to do with my experience in handling rather than a true personality change. If he were to be put into anyone else’s hands without the same attention to detail, he would immediately revert back to his less desirable tendencies. I worry that he would end up being constantly rehomed for that temper.

To some extent, when trying to sell animals, there’s a point where you just have to have faith that it will work out, but how do i balance that with the desire to ensure the well-being of the animal?

As always thanks in advance, and for any of you wondering, yes his yellow is quite mellow now.
Also I’ve tried to sign up for a MM seller account in the past but it 1) didn’t work properly, and 2) I’m not sure it’s appropriate to try selling in this context on MM. Thoughts?


As someone who has yet to actually sell a snake, rehome actually, I’ll throw in my three cents. If ya don’t trust it in your heart and your gut…don’t do it. There will be a regret in your mind forever. Set up an account on MM and use it. Thats how I’m rehoming my blood python. Finally found the perfect home for him. Initially Inwasnt going to ship, but we talked it through and Im gonna do it. It feels right. If your circumstance doesn’t feel right, then don’t go through with it.


100% agree on this David. @auriea, you don’t need to sell it to him, so if you feel off about it, don’t sell him and wait until you have another buyer.


Yeah, It’s weird because i keep going back and forth on it. He’s since told me that his wife is a vet and they keep together. That she has more experience, but he also just asked me for a picture of my driver’s license just now because he’s afraid of ‘being scammed’
Despite the fact that we have agreed on local pickup and i am willing to let him see (important word is SEE not ‘touch’) the animal in person before ever receiving payment for him.
So I don’t know! One minute I’m like he could be legit, then i get that.


I have tried once before, but i will try again with MorphMarket seller account. If it doesn’t go through twice, i guess I’ll just have another question to post on MRC.


Lotsa folks here to help you out!


Do you have a lot of money invested in him? If not, would you be willing to maybe rehome him with a reptile rescue group? You would not get any money for him but you might rest easier going that route……If you can locate a group like that. If it were me I would rather place him somewhere other than being used as a breeder. But that’s just me…… :snake::blush:


I am selling him to get money. There is a rescue near me that i can send animals to if need be. He’s not a very expensive boa, but money is money right now. I might ask one of my shop owner friends if i could sell him to her shop or if she knew someone or would let me put up an ad.


Ok I totally understand intent. He looks like a very beautiful boy! I am sure things will work out for you and him as well…… :crossed_fingers::blush::heart::snake:


Asking for a driver’s license or other personal info would tell me not to do it. Keep looking and find someone you feel comfortable with.

They have nothing to lose excited time in this deal, so no personal info is need to be exchanged.the vet info came to play to late, in my opinion. And if she is a vet, offer to meet at her place of business. If this is not legit, they will not reply or try to steer away from it.

Too many red flags to me. Especially for a living animal.


That’s what I’m feeling. Thanks.


Yeah, I agree with this. The request for a copy of your license seems sketchy to me. I’ve done several deals over Craigslist and FB Marketplace and the like, and I’ve never once been asked for that or felt the need to ask someone else. Usually you just meet up somewhere, look over whatever’s for sale, ask and answer any questions, and then if everything seems kosher, someone hands over cash, the transaction is completed, and both parties go their separate ways. If you’re offering to show them the snake before they hand over any money, they have no reason to think you’re trying to scam them. It just seems like a strange request, and I personally wouldn’t feel comfortable giving a total stranger off the internet a copy of my license.

I do think that trying to set up an MM selling account (get help from MM support if you need it) and see if you can attract an experienced keepers for him on here. I feel like MM attracts more “serious” and experienced keepers than most other classifieds.

Good luck! Definitely trust your gut. Don’t be afraid to slam on the brakes if something doesn’t feel right. It’s always better to err on the side of caution, in my opinion.