A New York woman filed a lawsuit against clothing store Zara after she says she found a rat sewn into the hem of her dress.
Cailey Fiesel bought a black dress from a Zara store in Greenwich, Connecticut, in July, the Daily Mail reported.
Several weeks later, Fiesel wore the garment to work.
“While at work, she started to notice a disturbingly pungent odor and was unable to identify the source,” Fiesel’s lawsuit states. “Despite getting up from her desk and walking around, she was unable to escape this odor.”
Later in the day, Fiesel felt something rubbing against her leg. Assuming it was a loose thread, she reached down to the hem of her dress to pull it out.
“To her utter shock and disbelief, as she ran her hand over the hem of the dress she felt an unusual bulge and suddenly realized that it was not a string that was rubbing against her leg but was instead a leg rubbing against her leg. The leg of a dead rodent that is,” the suit claims.
Fiesel alleges she suffered emotional distress as a result. She subsequently developed a rash that doctors diagnosed as an infection caused by the dead rat.
“Zara breached its duty to exercise reasonable care in designing, manufacturing, inspecting, distributing, delivering, supplying, inspecting, and/or selling its products by negligently releasing into the marketplace a product that was defective by containing disease-causing rodents,” the suit alleges.
A Zara representative said the company is aware of the lawsuit and is investigating the matter.
The piece of clothing was sewn in Turkey, according to a label on the dress. It remains unclear how long the animal had been attached to the dress.
“The length of time for the rodent to decompose depends on many factors, including size of the rodent, temperature, humidity and access to decomposers like flies,” according to general information provided by pest control firm Orkin, Metro reported. “Unfortunately it may take three weeks or more to completely decompose.”
Fiesel did not specify the amount of damages she is seeking from the Spanish retailer.