A family whose young dog recently died after being taken to a Petco in Chesterfield County, Virginia, Friday, for a grooming session claims the popular pet store is to blame for leaving their 2-year-old golden retriever in a drying cage for too long.
Colby didn't have health problems prior to his visit at Petco, according to his family. Allison Marks says she dropped him off for grooming and that her family have been customers at that particular Petco since Colby was a puppy. She didn't hear back from the groomer for a few hours so she called the store — at which point an assistant manager reportedly told her to meet them at an area animal hospital, reports WTVR. When Marks arrived at the hospital, she says the manager explained that Colby had been accidentally left in a drying cage for too long.
"This is her exact words: your groomer had to go because she had a graduation to go to," Marks told WTVR (interview shown below).
The dog likely suffered a heat stroke, according to a veterinarian. Even one hour after her death, Colby's internal body temperature registered at 105 degrees.
Petco's corporate offices reportedly told Marks the drying cages shut off after 15 minutes, but she says she has her doubts about that.
"I said, Well if they cut off after 15 minutes, how come his temperature is still so high?" she said. "You could clearly see he was dead. His eyes were glazed over and stuff. And I just said, 'Is he dead?' And they said, 'Yes, he's passed on.' And ... that was the worst day ever."
Marks shared the news on her Facebook page where she wrote: "I will love you forever and always, My sweet sweet Colby Jack RIP," reports WNEP.
Petco released a statement on Sunday afternoon:
All of us at Petco are heartbroken by Colby's passing. The health and safety of pets is always our top priority and we take full responsibility for all animals under our care. We are taking immediate action to investigate and understand the situation. Our thoughts are with Colby's family at this difficult time.
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