Three years ago Teresa Gilland took her beloved Sadie, a Lhasa Apso, to Petco for a normal grooming. As part of the grooming, Petco uses cage dryers, Sadie was put into a kennel and the dryer turned on. I do not know the details from there, but the story ends with little Sadie being rushed to the vet with a 107 temperature (normal dog temperature is 101-102) and then dying due to what the vet called a "severe heat stroke". When Gilland later saw Sadie’s cage at Petco, she said it had blood smears and scratch marks.
Teresa was of course devastated and has made it her mission to stop Petco from using these machines or at least put up a warning to their customers. This mission has come in the form of a lawsuit which has not been easy to file since in the state of California dogs are property so finding a lawyer to represent you is a challenge. But Teresa has not given up in 3 years and has now found Christine Garcia, a San Francisco lawyer who specializes in animal litigation.
The civil lawsuit they filed in Sacramento Superior Court charges wrongful death and negligence, and asks for unspecified monetary damages. “I want Petco to stop using these machines, or at least post warnings to customers about them,” said Gilland told the Sacramento Bee. “This, for me, has been just devastating. I don’t want it to happen to anyone else.”
Unfortunately, Sadie is not the first dog to perish because of a cage dryer. And she wasn’t the last. In the right hands, and with plenty of supervision, many groomers and veterinarians say they can be safe. But even a well-meaning groomer, busy with other dogs, might forget about a dog in a kennel set up with a drying mechanism. Temperatures can quickly reach dangerous levels.
I will keep my eye on this case as it continues to develop. I can't imagine the pain to lose your beloved pet in this way. What do you think?
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